(a) The Legislature finds and declares that statewide policy coordination and personnel training with respect to county attendance review boards will greatly facilitate the achievement of the goals expressed in Section 48320. It is therefore the intent of the Legislature in enacting this section to do the following:
(1) Encourage the cooperation, coordination, and development of strategies to support county school attendance review boards in carrying out their responsibilities to establish local school attendance review boards as necessary. These strategies may include, but need not be limited to, plans for the training of school attendance review board personnel.
(2) Divert pupils with serious attendance and behavioral problems from the juvenile justice system to agencies more directly related to the state public school system by developing a system for gathering and dispensing information on successful community-based and school-based programs.
(3) Reduce duplication of the services of state and county agencies in serving high-risk youth, including youth with school attendance or behavioral problems.
(4) Reduce the number of dropouts in the state public education system by promoting interagency cooperation among those agencies which have as their goals preventing students from dropping out, and increasing the holding power of the public schools.
(b) The Superintendent of Public Instruction shall coordinate and administer a state school attendance review board, as follows:
(1) On or before January 31 of each year, the superintendent shall extend invitations of participation to representatives of appropriate groups throughout the state, including, but not limited to, representatives of school districts, parent groups, county probation departments, county welfare departments, county superintendents of schools, law enforcement agencies, community-based youth service centers, school guidance personnel, child welfare and attendance personnel, the health care profession and state associations having an interest in youth with school attendance or behavioral problems. The superintendent shall also request the participation of representatives from interested state agencies or departments, including, but not limited to, the Department of the California Youth Authority, the Department of Justice, the State Department of Social Services, and the Office of Criminal Justice Planning. To the extent feasible, members of the board shall include persons who are currently members of county or local school attendance review boards. For every year after the first year that the board is convened, the purpose of the invitations of participation shall be to inform appropriate groups, state agencies, and departments of the purposes of the board, to fill vacancies, and to supplement the membership of the board as necessary.
(2) The superintendent shall prescribe an appropriate deadline for acceptance of invitations of participation as a member of the state school attendance review board for that particular year, and the invitations accepted on or before the deadline shall constitute the board for that year, except that the board shall also include a representative of the State Department of Education designated by the director of that department. The representative of the State Department of Education shall be the chairperson of the board.
(3) The superintendent shall convene the board at least four times during the year. At its first meeting, the board shall elect any officers, other than its chairperson, as it deems necessary. Members of the board shall serve without compensation and without reimbursement of travel and living expenses.
(4) The State Department of Education shall provide assistance as requested by the Superintendent of Public Instruction in order to implement the provisions of this section.
(c) The state school attendance review board shall make recommendations annually to the Superintendent of Public Instruction, and to state agencies as deemed appropriate, regarding the needs and services provided to high-risk youth, including youth with school attendance or behavioral problems, in the state public schools, and shall propose uniform guidelines or other means to attain the goals stated in subdivision (a).
(Amended by Stats. 2000, Ch. 222, Sec. 2.)