Legislature(2019 - 2020)BUTROVICH 205

02/26/2019 08:30 AM EDUCATION

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08:30:16 AM Start
08:30:30 AM SB53
08:58:04 AM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
-- Please Note Time Change --
Uniform Rule 23 Waived
-- Teleconference <Listen Only> --
Moved CSSB 53(EDC) Out of Committee
-- Public Testimony --
<Bill Hearing Canceled>
-- Public Testimony --
**Streamed live on AKL.tv**
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
              SENATE EDUCATION STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                             
                       February 26, 2019                                                                                        
                           8:30 a.m.                                                                                            
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
Senator Gary Stevens, Chair                                                                                                     
Senator Shelley Hughes, Vice Chair                                                                                              
Senator Chris Birch                                                                                                             
Senator Tom Begich                                                                                                              
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
Senator Mia Costello                                                                                                            
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
SENATE BILL NO. 53                                                                                                              
"An Act relating to the duties of the Board of Regents of the                                                                   
University of Alaska."                                                                                                          
     - MOVED CSSB 53(EDC) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                      
SENATE BILL NO. 56                                                                                                              
"An  Act  relating  to health  education  and  physical  activity                                                               
requirements for  students in grades kindergarten  through eight;                                                               
and establishing  the Thursday in February  immediately following                                                               
Presidents' Day as PLAAY Day."                                                                                                  
     - BILL HEARING CANCELED                                                                                                    
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
BILL: SB  53                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: UNIVERSITY REPORTING REQUIREMENTS                                                                                  
SPONSOR(s): SENATOR(s) STEVENS                                                                                                  
02/11/19       (S)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
02/11/19       (S)       EDC, FIN                                                                                               
02/21/19       (S)       EDC AT 9:00 AM BUTROVICH 205                                                                           
02/21/19       (S)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
02/21/19       (S)       MINUTE(EDC)                                                                                            
02/25/19       (S)       EDC WAIVED PUBLIC HEARING NOTICE,RULE                                                                  
02/26/19       (S)       EDC AT 8:30 AM BUTROVICH 205                                                                           
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
TIM LAMKIN, Staff                                                                                                               
Senator Gary Stevens                                                                                                            
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT: Introduced CSSB 53, version M.                                                                            
MILES BAKER, Associate Vice President for Government Relations                                                                  
University of Alaska                                                                                                            
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION   STATEMENT:   Answered   questions   about   university                                                             
reporting  processes  for accreditation  in  the  context of  the                                                               
hearing on SB 53.                                                                                                               
DR. KAREN CAREY, Ph.D., Provost                                                                                                 
University of Alaska Southeast                                                                                                  
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION  STATEMENT:  Answered  questions  about  the  university                                                             
accreditation process in the context of the hearing on SB 53.                                                                   
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
8:30:16 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR  GARY   STEVENS  called   the  Senate   Education  Standing                                                             
Committee meeting  to order at 8:30  a.m. Present at the  call to                                                               
order were Senators Begich, Hughes, Birch, and Chair Stevens.                                                                   
            SB  53-UNIVERSITY REPORTING REQUIREMENTS                                                                        
8:30:30 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR  STEVENS  announced the  consideration  of  SB 53  and  his                                                               
intent to move  the bill out of committee. He  noted the proposed                                                               
CS and solicited a motion.                                                                                                      
8:31:22 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR HUGHES moved to adopt CSSB  53, version M, as the working                                                               
8:31:32 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR STEVENS objected for purposes of discussion.                                                                              
8:31:42 AM                                                                                                                    
TIM   LAMKIN,  Staff,   Senator   Gary   Stevens,  Alaska   State                                                               
Legislature,  Juneau, Alaska,  said SB  53 is  a reaction  to the                                                               
recent  loss  of  accreditation   by  the  University  of  Alaska                                                               
Anchorage  School  of  Education.  It is  designed  to  keep  the                                                               
legislature informed.                                                                                                           
He explained  that Section  1 in  the committee  substitute would                                                               
require that  UA's annual  statutory report  be submitted  to the                                                               
legislature  (Senate   Secretary  and   Chief  Clerk)   and  then                                                               
presented  to the  education committees  with  scheduling of  the                                                               
presentation at  the discretion of the  committee chairs. Section                                                               
1  also  conforms  to  the  existing  reporting  requirements  in                                                               
MR. LAMKIN said Section 2  is the new reporting section regarding                                                               
accrediting for  the University of  Alaska. It gives  more detail                                                               
about what the  report should contain. It  uses common vernacular                                                               
to  describe  what is  expected.  The  committee packets  have  a                                                               
spreadsheet called  UA Program Accreditation Summary.  He said he                                                               
used  the column  headers in  that report,  which the  university                                                               
currently provides to the Board  of Regents and incorporated that                                                               
language  in  the committee  substitute.  The  fiscal note  cites                                                               
existing  Board of  Regents policy.  He  said there  too he  used                                                               
terms  from the  fiscal  note in  the  committee substitute.  The                                                               
committee substitute  gives clear  parameters and  definitions of                                                               
what  the  report  should  look  like.  It  aligns  to  what  the                                                               
university  is  doing now  but  adds  specific attention  to  any                                                               
accrediting  that  could  be  compromised.  The  goal  is  to  be                                                               
preemptive rather than reactive.                                                                                                
SENATOR HUGHES  asked how future education  committee chairs will                                                               
know that the reports must be presented in person.                                                                              
MR. LAMKIN responded that the language  is crafted to give a fair                                                               
amount   of  flexibility   to  the   legislature.  He   expressed                                                               
confidence  that  between  the  Senate  Secretary,  House  Clerk,                                                               
committee chairs,  and other members, the  presentations would be                                                               
8:36:34 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR  HUGHES said  that  the  bill states  that  the Board  of                                                               
Regents "shall  prepare and  present in person,"  so it  puts the                                                               
onus on  the Board of  Regents, but she  wanted it on  the record                                                               
that  if an  education chair  failed to  request the  report, the                                                               
Board of Regents would be responsible.                                                                                          
CHAIR STEVENS  said that for  an issue like  this, it would  be a                                                               
joint presentation to the House  and Senate Education Committees,                                                               
so there would be a double system to ensure it occurs.                                                                          
8:37:26 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR BIRCH  commented on the number  of accreditation agencies                                                               
and asked  if the  university pays for  membership in  the bodies                                                               
and how much they pay.                                                                                                          
CHAIR STEVENS  said it is often  a two-year process and  a lot of                                                               
expense is involved.                                                                                                            
MR.  LAMKIN  added   that  there  is  an   elaborate  network  of                                                               
accrediting agencies.  Dr. Karen  Carey can speak  to accrediting                                                               
issues. He also mentioned possible  consideration of a change for                                                               
the second date in the bill.  August 15 is about six months after                                                               
the first  report, but it  may not align  well with the  Board of                                                               
Regents' meeting schedule.                                                                                                      
8:39:33 AM                                                                                                                    
MILES BAKER,  Associate Vice President for  Government Relations,                                                               
University of Alaska,  Juneau, Alaska, said the  Board of Regents                                                               
has a fairly  regular schedule and could comply with  the bill as                                                               
currently written,  but June 30 or  July 1 would allow  the board                                                               
time to review  the report during the June meeting  and before it                                                               
was  submitted to  the  legislature.  Alternatively, a  September                                                               
30/October  1 time  frame would  allow  the board  to review  the                                                               
report during the fall meeting.                                                                                                 
SENATOR  HUGHES asked  whether  a report  that's  due in  January                                                               
would be approved in December.                                                                                                  
MR. BAKER  said it would  be done in  the fall meeting,  which is                                                               
typically  in  November.  The  budget is  prepared  at  the  fall                                                               
meeting so it can be submitted to the governor's office on time.                                                                
SENATOR HUGHES  said June 30/July  1 would be more  evenly spaced                                                               
if it's a November report.                                                                                                      
CHAIR STEVENS asked  if he was saying that it  would be easier to                                                               
have this report due in October if the board meets in September.                                                                
MR. BAKER replied  yes; the end of September or  the beginning of                                                               
the following month.                                                                                                            
SENATOR HUGHES  said he also  stated that  July 1 would  work for                                                               
the Board of Regents. That date would be more evenly spaced.                                                                    
MR. BAKER agreed that July 1 would work.                                                                                        
CHAIR STEVENS asked if two weeks after a meeting is sufficient.                                                                 
MR. BAKER said that would be very doable.                                                                                       
8:43:20 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR  HUGHES  offered  her understanding  that  the  Board  of                                                               
Regents  would not  be  developing the  report  during those  two                                                               
weeks.  They  would  approve  it  on June  15  and  it  would  be                                                               
available on July 1.                                                                                                            
MR. BAKER said that is correct.                                                                                                 
8:43:48 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR BEGICH  asked if  an amendment was  needed to  change the                                                               
date on page 2, line 22, from August 15 to July 1.                                                                              
CHAIR STEVENS replied that Senator Hughes would make the motion.                                                                
SENATOR  BIRCH asked  if the  meetings  are live  streamed and  a                                                               
record made similar to legislative committee meetings.                                                                          
MR.  BAKER  answered  that  the Board  of  Regents  meetings  are                                                               
streamed live and  minutes are prepared and approved  at the next                                                               
meeting.  They  are not  archived.  All  committee materials  are                                                               
released a week in advance and  the meetings comply with the Open                                                               
Meetings Act.                                                                                                                   
8:45:48 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR STEVENS asked if he had any comments on the fiscal note.                                                                  
MR.  BAKER said  the fiscal  note is  not expected  to change  in                                                               
terms  of  finances  but  there  may be  slight  changes  to  the                                                               
descriptions to comply with the  committee substitute. The report                                                               
will be integrated into the system.                                                                                             
SENATOR HUGHES noted  that the fiscal note  mentions the internal                                                               
processes are  annually reported to  the board, but it  sounds as                                                               
though that will be switched to twice a year.                                                                                   
MR.  BAKER answered  that  is correct.  As  mentioned during  the                                                               
introduction,  UA  has  established  a number  of  interim  steps                                                               
between  the  campuses, the  provost,  and  the Academic  Student                                                               
Affairs  Council, and  the Academic  Council, all  of which  will                                                               
have this as  an agenda item. By the time  the legislative report                                                               
is prepared,  there should be  ample information.  Any accreditor                                                               
feedback  from each  of those  meetings will  be reported  up the                                                               
CHAIR STEVENS  asked if  he could answer  the question  about the                                                               
cost of accreditation.                                                                                                          
MR. BAKER deferred the question to Provost Carey.                                                                               
CHAIR  STEVENS  said every  major  university  goes through  that                                                               
process and  as expensive and  time consuming as  it is, it  is a                                                               
very valuable process.                                                                                                          
8:48:50 AM                                                                                                                    
DR. KAREN CAREY, Ph.D., Provost,  University of Alaska Southeast,                                                               
Juneau, Alaska, said that every  accreditation body charges a fee                                                               
for the university to be  a member of the accrediting commission.                                                               
All  the  universities  in  Alaska  pay a  fee  as  part  of  the                                                               
Northwest   Commission   on   Colleges  and   Universities.   The                                                               
university pays a  fee for each program to be  accredited and for                                                               
site visits. It is expensive,  but it is absolutely necessary for                                                               
the  programs   to  be   accredited  for   the  students   to  be                                                               
successfully later.                                                                                                             
8:49:54 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR STEVENS  said that the  Northwest Commission  accredits all                                                               
the major programs at the university.  This entails a lot of time                                                               
and travel for the commission and  a lot of time for the provost,                                                               
the  administration and  faculty. He  said he  assumes she  would                                                               
agree that the process is very important.                                                                                       
DR. CAREY  said yes and added  that the Juneau campus  is getting                                                               
ready  to go  through the  Northwest self-evaluation  and host  a                                                               
site visit April  24-26. Nine members of an  evaluation team will                                                               
visit the  campus for three days  to review what is  in the self-                                                               
study. UAS have  been working very hard the last  year to prepare                                                               
the  report and  to prepare  for  the site  visit. Every  program                                                               
needs to  stay on top of  its accreditation to make  sure all the                                                               
requirements of the accrediting body are met.                                                                                   
CHAIR  STEVENS  asked  if  the  Northwest  team  would  have  any                                                               
recommendations during the site visit.                                                                                          
DR. CAREY  answered that the team  will come to campus  to verify                                                               
that  UAS is  doing  what is  in the  self-study.  There will  be                                                               
meetings with  student groups, faculty, staff,  advisory council,                                                               
members of  the community, and the  Board of Regents. At  the end                                                               
of those three  days, the chair of the evaluation  team will meet                                                               
with the chancellor and verbally  present an overview of what the                                                               
team found.  Several weeks  later UAS will  get a  written report                                                               
with recommendations. That  report goes to the 11  members of the                                                               
Northwest panel who  will vote in June  to approve accreditation,                                                               
to give  partial accreditation,  to put  impose probation,  or to                                                               
deny accreditation.                                                                                                             
8:53:20 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR BIRCH  said he noticed  there are 65  accredited programs                                                               
and   a  myriad   of  agencies   and  that   most  have   initial                                                               
accreditation  dates after  1974. He  asked how  UAS pays  for 65                                                               
different programs and if she had a rough estimate of the cost.                                                                 
DR. CAREY  said each accrediting  body tells the  university what                                                               
the fee  will be  for the  year. The  money is  set aside  in the                                                               
budget so  the university can follow  through with accreditation.                                                               
In  the late  60s  and early  70s,  there was  a  great push  for                                                               
programs to  demonstrate that they  were providing  the education                                                               
that students  needed to be  successful in whatever  career those                                                               
students were  going into. Almost every  professional field today                                                               
has an  accrediting body  to make sure  the programs  are meeting                                                               
the  expectations of  what  is  required in  the  field, so  that                                                               
students can be prepared when they complete their education.                                                                    
CHAIR STEVENS  asked if she  would agree that  some accreditation                                                               
bodies are  more important than others;  the Northwest Commission                                                               
is   the  big   one  and   then  there   are  some   programmatic                                                               
DR. CAREY replied  that the Northwest Commission is  the big one.                                                               
In  order to  have  any access  to any  of  the federal  programs                                                               
through  the  federal  Department   of  Education,  UAS  must  be                                                               
accredited  by the  Northwest Commission.  In  many cases,  other                                                               
accrediting bodies are important to employers.                                                                                  
8:56:37 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR HUGHES moved  a conceptual amendment to  CSSB 53, version                                                               
M. On page 2, line 22, delete  August 15 and replace it with July                                                               
8:56:56 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR STEVENS  announced that  without objection,  the conceptual                                                               
amendment is adopted.                                                                                                           
8:57:16 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR  STEVENS  opened  public testimony  and  after  determining                                                               
there  was   none,  closed  public  testimony.   He  removed  his                                                               
objection and solicited a motion.                                                                                               
8:57:42 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR HUGHES  moved to  report CSSB 53,  version M  as amended,                                                               
from  committee  with  individual  recommendations  and  attached                                                               
fiscal note.                                                                                                                    
8:57:52 AM                                                                                                                    
Chair  Stevens announced  that  without  objection, CSSB  53(EDC)                                                               
moved from the Senate Education Standing Committee.                                                                             
8:57:58 AM                                                                                                                    
At ease                                                                                                                         
8:58:04 AM                                                                                                                    
There being  no further  business to  come before  the committee,                                                               
Chair Stevens  adjourned the Senate Education  Standing Committee                                                               
at 8:58 a.m.                                                                                                                    

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
SB053_UnivAK_AccreditReporting_BillText_VersionM.pdf SEDC 2/26/2019 8:30:00 AM
SB 53
09_SB053_UnivAK_AccreditReporting_BillText_ExplanationChanges_Version A to M.pdf SEDC 2/26/2019 8:30:00 AM
SB 53
10_SB053_UnivAK_AccreditReporting_Sectional_VersionM.pdf SEDC 2/26/2019 8:30:00 AM
SB 53