The School Board of Collier County
Bylaws & Policies
 

2520 - INSTRUCTIONAL MATERIALS AND RESOURCES

Introduction: Duties and Responsibilities Pertaining To Instructional Materials

 

A.

School Board

     
   

The Board has the constitutional duty and responsibility to select and provide adequate instructional materials for all its students to enhance student achievement and development. In conformity with prevailing law, the term "adequate instructional materials" shall be understood to mean a sufficient number of student site licenses or sets of materials that are available in bound, unbound, kit, or package form and may consist of hardbacked or softbacked textbooks, electronic content, consumables, learning laboratories, manipulatives, electronic media, and computer courseware or software that serve as the basis for instruction for each student in the core subject areas of mathematics, language arts, social studies, science, reading, and literature.

     
   

The Board is also responsible for the content of all instructional materials used in District classrooms, whether adopted or purchased from the State-adopted instructional materials list, or adopted, or purchased through the District’s instructional materials program or otherwise purchased and made available for instruction in the classroom.

     
   

These materials shall be provided in a variety of formats that are determined to be necessary for the attainment of educational and instructional goals and designed to present materials in an objective manner. Such formats shall also include accessible materials and computer software for special needs students as specified in a student’s IEP or Section 504 plan. Instructional materials including textbooks, educational media materials, digital content materials, films, educational television used for instructional purposes, and so on are typically used for enhancing instruction, furthering instruction, and assisting group instruction. Given the Board’s constitutional duty and responsibility, it must adopt instructional materials selected from (a) State approved materials in accordance with the State’s instructional materials adoption cycles; or (b) the Board’s instructional adoption program; or (c) a combination of both of these options.

   

Beginning with the 2015-2016 academic year, all materials considered for adoption for students in grades kindergarten through grade 12 must be provided in electronic or digital format. Electronic format shall be understood to mean text based or image based content in a form that is produced on, published by, or readable on a computer or other digital device and is an electronic version of a printed book. Digital format shall be understood to mean such text based or image based content in a form that provides students with multiple interactive functions and activities that can be used for individualized and group learning and has the ability to be accessed at anytime and anywhere (See F.S. 1006.29(3) and the FDOE’s 2014 Policies and Procedures for the Florida Instructional Materials Adoption approved pursuant to F.A.C. Rule 6A-7.0710). Electronic and digital formats do not include electronic or computer hardware even if bundled with software or other electronic media, nor does it include equipment or supplies.

     
   

Beginning with the 2015-2016 fiscal year, the Board shall use at least fifty percent (50%) of its annual allocation for instructional materials purchase for the purchase of digital or electronic instructional materials that align with State standards and are included on either the State’s or the District’s adoption list. Up to fifty percent (50%) of the annual allocation may also be used for the purchase of its instructional materials including library and reference books and non-print materials not included on the State-adopted list and for repair and renovation of textbooks and library books.

     
 

B.

Superintendent

     
   

As part of the statutory division of responsibilities, the Superintendent has the duty to recommend plans for improving, providing, distributing, accounting, and caring for instructional materials and other instructional aids in conformity with Board rules or administrative procedures relative to the requisition, purchase, receipt, storage, distribution, use, conservation, records, and reports of, and management practices and property accountability concerning instructional materials. This shall also include providing for an evaluation of any instructional materials to be requisitioned that have not been used previously in the District’s schools, as well as the development of any rubric of criteria to evaluate instructional materials to be reviewed.

 

C.

Principals

     
   

In addition, school principals have the duty to assure that instructional materials are appropriately used to provide instruction to students enrolled at the grade level or levels for which the materials are designed, pursuant to adopted Board rule. School principals shall communicate with parents the manner in which instructional materials are used to implement the curricular objectives of the school. School principals are also responsible for collection from each student, or the student’s parent, the purchase price of any instructional material that the student has lost, destroyed, or unnecessarily damaged and report and transmit the money collected to the Superintendent, or the Superintendent’s designee. The failure to collect any such sum, upon reasonable effort by the school principal, may result in the suspension of the student from participation in extra-curricular activities or satisfaction of the debt by the student through community service activities at the given school site as determined by the principal, pursuant to Board policy or administrative procedure.

     
   

Further, upon the request of parents of District students, principals shall sell to them any instructional materials used in the given school. All such sales shall be made in accordance with policy or administrative procedure. Principals shall annually provide information to parents that they may purchase instructional materials as well as how to purchase such materials. All money collected from the sale, exchange, loss, or damage of instructional materials shall be transmitted to the Superintendent, or the Superintendent’s designee, to be deposited in the District’s accounts and added to the District’s line item appropriation for instructional materials. Finally, the school principal shall see that all instructional materials are fully and properly accounted for and identified and maintain a record of the same.

Evaluation and Adoption of Instructional Materials

In accordance with F.S. 1006.34(2)(b), in selecting instructional material, including but not limited to textbooks, library, media, and other reading material used in District schools, priority must be given to selecting those materials that align with State standards as set forth in F.S. 1003.41. The selection of instructional material must take into account the following: (1) the age of the students who normally could be expected to have access to such material; (2) the educational purpose of the material including instructional objectives within the curriculum frameworks for career and technical education as well as adult education; (3) the degree to which the material would be supplemented as part of classroom discussion; and (4) consideration of the racial, ethnic, socio-economic and cultural diversity with the School District.

In addition, in accordance with F.S. 1006.31, instructional materials reviewers, both State and District reviewers, as part of both the State and School District adoption process, must include the following as part of any recommendation for adoption of the following:

 

A.

only instructional materials that accurately portray the ethnic, socioeconomic, cultural, religious, physical, and racial diversity of our society, including men and women in professional, career, and executive roles, and the role and contributions of the entrepreneur and labor in the total development of this state and the United States.

     
 

B.

only materials that accurately portray, whenever appropriate, humankind’s place in ecological systems, including the necessity for the protection of our environment and conservation of our natural resources and the effects on the human system of the use of tobacco, alcohol, controlled substances, and other dangerous substances.

     
 

C.

materials that encourage thrift, fire prevention, and humane treatment of people and animals.

     
 

D.

require, when appropriate to the instructional comprehension of students, that materials for social science, history, or civics classes contain the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States. A reviewer may not recommend any instructional materials that contain any matter reflecting unfairly upon persons because of their race, color, creed, national origin, ancestry, gender, religion, disability, socioeconomic status, or occupation.

These criteria do not limit or remove the District from including in its curriculum the instructional requirements set forth in F.S. 1003.42 such as the history of the United States, the history of the Holocaust, African American history, the study of Hispanic contributions to the United States, the study of women’s contributions to the United States, the nature and importance of free enterprise to the U.S. economy, patriotism, the events surrounding the terrorist attacks occurring in September 11, 2001, and the impact of those events on the nation; the elementary principles of agriculture; kindness to animals; history of the State of Florida; comprehensive health education; conservation of natural resources; and character development curricula. (See, fn. 1 to F.S. 1006.31 and 1003.42).

The Board must purchase current instructional materials in order to provide each student in grades kindergarten through grade 12 with a major tool of instruction in core courses of the subject areas of mathematics, language arts, science, social studies, reading, and literature. Such purchase must be made within the first three (3) years after the effective date of the adoption cycle unless the Board, or a consortium of districts to which it might belong, has implemented its own instructional materials program. In this regard, a major tool shall be understood to refer to (a) materials that provide instructional content and student learning activities for the courses noted above as well as physical education, health, world languages, visual arts and performing arts; and (b) materials for the instructional content and learning activities for the Career and Technical Education Curriculum Frameworks (See, 2014 FDOE Policies and Procedures for the Florida Instructional Materials Adoption, at p.1).

Instructional Materials Review Process

 

A.

Review of Only State Instructional Materials Being Considered For Adoption

     
   

The Board shall have the right to consider, review, and adopt State instructional materials submitted for adoption, pursuant to F.S. 1006.29. The Superintendent, at the request of the Commissioner of Education, shall nominate one (1) classroom teacher or District-level content supervisor to review two (2) or three (3) of the submissions recommended by the State instructional materials reviewers who have been appointed by the Commissioner to undertake such a review. For the purposes of State adoption, the term instructional materials shall be understood to mean those items having intellectual content that by design serve as a major tool for assisting in the instruction of a subject or course. District reviewers shall independently rate the recommended submissions on the basis of instructional usability of recommended submissions in the classroom. After careful review of State submitted instructional materials, District reviewers shall prepare a report of its findings and submit it electronically to the Department of Education. Once the District receives the State’s recommended list for adoption, such list shall be subject to review by the Instructional Materials Review Committees as more fully noted in subsection B of this section below.

     
 

B.

Review of Both State and Non-State Adopted Instruction Materials

     
   

The Board shall also have the right to consider review and adopt instructional materials that are not State adopted. Thus, even if the District adopts and purchases State-adopted instruction materials for given content areas, it remains responsible for providing any and all additional instructional materials for instructional areas it has determined have not been adequately covered or provided for by State adopted materials or allocation.

   

To this end, the Superintendent shall establish Instructional Materials Review Committees comprised of teachers, academic coaches or qualified content area coordinators, principals and/or other administrators drawn from District elementary, middle and/or high schools. The committees shall also include parents and community members. There will be separate Instructional Materials Review Committees for each school level and, within such level, instructional and administrative personnel serving on the given committee must be certified in the appropriate content areas, and/or serve at the appropriate school level, of the instructional materials adoptions to be reviewed.

     
   

With this in mind, all Instructional Materials Review Committees shall have between fifteen(15) to twenty-one (21) persons unless a lesser number is warranted given a particular content area for instructional materials adoption review, at the discretion of the Superintendent or the Superintendent’s designee within the Department of Curriculum & Instruction. To this end, the Instructional Materials Review Committees shall be comprised as follows: a) one-third (1/3) of any such Instructional Materials Review Committee shall include classroom teachers as nominated by their principals, with respect to teacher composition, at least one (1) teacher serving on any such committee must be nominated by the Collier County Educational Association ("CCEA") in accordance with Section 3.12 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement ("CBA"); b) one-third (1/3) of any such committee shall include administrators and or academic coaches or content area coordinators nominated by the head of the Department of Curriculum & Instruction; and c) one-third (1/3) of any such committee shall include a parent(s), community member(s), and/or any other person who has content area knowledge and expertise as nominated by Board members and the Superintendent. When necessary, the Superintendent will utilize his/her nominations to ensure parental and/or community representation on the Committee. In connection with the first two-thirds (2/3) of the committee’s composition, the pool of such candidates shall be chosen by a team drawn from the Curriculum and Instruction Department as determined by the head of such Department and the Deputy Superintendent.

   

With respect to issue of the composition on an Instructional Materials Review Committee, expertise shall be understood to mean that a person serving on a committee has developed skill and/or knowledge in the textbook adoption subject or content area based upon education and experience that would enable such person to be able to form an opinion in the subject or content area that would assist in the committee’s review. In this connection, parent shall be understood to mean a parent, guardian, or a person exercising supervisory authority in place of a parent, of a student enrolled in a District school. Finally, community member shall be understood to mean any person who resides full-time in Collier County inclusive of any parent who may have a child who is enrolled in a private school or who is home schooled.

     
   

All persons, as described above, who have interest in serving, must complete an application of interest as shall be posted online and filed with the office of the Superintendent electronically. Any person who serves on an Instructional Materials Review Committee must attend a minimum of two-thirds (2/3) of the meetings in order to be able to vote to recommend to the Superintendent any instructional material being considered for adoption.

     
   

The given Instructional Materials Review Committee will review the particular instructional materials being considered for adoption based upon (a) the accuracy of the materials; (b) whether they are up-to-date and in alignment with statutory mandated State standards; (c) in conformity with the criteria noted in the Evaluation and Adoption of Instructional Materials section set forth above; and (d) an attentiveness to the quality of the particular instructional materials being reviewed where quality shall be understood to mean the character or degree of excellence of the instructional materials being reviewed especially in comparison with other substantially similar materials committee members have reviewed or have had experience.

   

To enhance objectivity in the reviewing process, a rubric of evaluation criteria being applied, that is quantitative in nature, will be used by the given Instructional Materials Review Committee. The rubric will be standardized for Instructional Materials Review Committees at all levels of review. The Instructional Materials Review Committee selected for any given level content area shall not only prepare the minutes of each meeting held but also prepare a report of its findings and conclusions and submit it in writing and electronically to the Superintendent for transmittal to the Board. The minutes, as well as the final report, shall specifically note whether during the course and scope of meeting discussions, and final report preparation, there were areas members of the given Materials Instruction Committee were in agreement or in disagreement and the substance of any such agreement or disagreement. The final report shall include all documentation used or relied upon by the Instructional Materials Review Committee in order to provide the Board with as complete a record as possible for its review. The committees will insure during review and thereafter that safeguards are in place against the unauthorized use, reproduction, and distribution of materials being considered for adoption.

     
   

Prior to the first meeting of any Materials Instructional Committee, an orientation session will be held to discuss and review the nature of the committee process, expectations for service on the Committee, the role individual members will play on the committee, and any other area determined to be part of the committee review and participation process. The orientation shall be conducted by a member of the Curriculum and Instruction Department as determined by the head of that department.

Parental Objections To Adopted Instructional Materials

 

A.

Introduction

     
   

Any parent or legal guardian of a student currently enrolled in a District school may file a petition contesting either (1) specific content items within instructional materials already in use, or to be used in any of the student’s classes (see, too, Subsection B of this section); or (2) any instructional materials to be considered by the Board for adoption. In accordance with F.S. 1006.28, the parent must file a petition on a form provided by the Board and made available for the public and posted on the District’s website.

   

In connection with any instructional materials being proposed for adoption, the contesting parent or legal guardian must file the petition form within thirty (30) calendar days after the Board’s adoption of the instructional material. The petitioner must (1) sign the form; (2) state the objection and the bases for it; and (3) provide the required contact information. After the thirty (30) day calendar period has expired, the Board shall conduct at least one (1) public hearing only on such timely received petitions and provide the petitioner(s) written notification of the date and time of the hearing at least ten (10) calendar days before the hearing. In this regard, the contested instructional materials must be posted on-line for public review at least ten (10) calendar days before the hearing date. The Board’s decision after convening and conducting the hearing shall be final and not subject to any further petition or review.

     
 

B.

Specific Petition Procedures

     
   

With respect to instructional materials already adopted and in use, or proposed to be used in the classroom, any parent, legal guardian or person exercising supervisory authority in place of a parent, of a student currently enrolled in a District school shall file a petition for review with the office of the principal of the school where the challenged material is being used. Such material shall include not only instructional materials used in the classroom, but also books and/or other media material that will be placed in the school’s media center for use. The petitioner may object only to the instructional materials used in the class in which his/her child, or the student of which s/he is legal guardian or exercising supervisory authority, is a student.

     
   

Within five (5) calendar days of receipt of the petition, the Principal and/or a designee who has knowledge of the school’s curriculum, shall meet with the parent to try to resolve the matter informally by explaining the criteria for the selection of the challenged material and the usage and application of such material in the curriculum, the individual classroom and/or the school’s media center if need be. If multiple parents have challenged the same materials, the Principal may consolidate the group and meet with them collectively.

   

If the matter is not resolved at the informal level, the petition shall proceed to a formal review ten (10) calendar days thereafter before a School’s Materials Review Committee ("SMRC"). The SMRC shall be appointed by the Principal. It shall be comprised of the Principal and/or his designee, two (2) teachers from the subject area and grade, one (1) teacher from a different grade and subject area, a teacher chosen by the CCEA in accordance with the CBA, a media specialist, and at least one (1) parent who is a member of the school’s School Advisory Committee (SAC). The parent or parents, if a consolidated group is involved as noted above, shall present their concerns to the SMRC. The Principal shall establish the time limit for such presentations. The SMRC may then ask questions or solicit additional information from the petitioner(s) as may be necessary. The SMRC will then meet, independently of the Principal within five (5) calendar days thereafter to prepare a response setting forth its findings and conclusions and deliver it electronically to the parent(s). Such response will be sent to the parent(s) within five (5) calendar days after the meeting.

     
   

If the petitioner or petitioners are not satisfied with the SMRC’s response and recommendation, such person or persons may appeal the SMRC’s findings and conclusions to the Superintendent within five (5) calendar days after receipt of the response. The Superintendent will convene a meeting of the District Materials Committee ("DMC") within ten (10) calendar days upon receipt of the appeal. The DMC shall be chaired by the Superintendent or his/her designee. The Committee shall include: the head of the Department of Curriculum and Instruction, or his/her designee from within that department; a Principal at the appropriate level; coordinator in the appropriate subject area; a teacher; a media specialist; a teacher chosen by the CCEA in accordance with Section 3.12 of the CBA; a parent representative from the SAC from the school where the petition has been filed; and a non-parent member of the community chosen from a list of interested persons. The request for such persons to participate shall be promptly posted on the District website upon approval of Policy 2520 by the Board.

   

The DMC will meet to review the appeal and provide the Superintendent with a report and recommendation, with supporting reasons, within ten (10) calendar days after the meeting. The Superintendent will inform the petitioner(s) of the report by email and/or regular U.S. mail which shall include an attached copy of the report for review. If the report and recommendation is not accepted, the petitioner(s) may exercise his/her or their right to be heard by the Board at a public hearing in accordance with timetable noted in subsection A above to this Section IV pertaining to Parental Objections Section of this policy.

F.S. 1006.28 – 1006.40
F.A.C. 6A-7.0710
FDOE 2014 Policies and Procedures for the Florida Instructional Materials Adoption

Revised 2/17/15

© Collier 2015