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Chapter 13. School Facilities and Equipment Subchapter 1. School Housing Article 2. School Sites Procedures for Site Acquisition -- State-Funded School Districts   

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A state-funded school district is defined as a school district having a project funded under Chapter 12.5 (commencing with Section 17070.10) of the Education Code. A state-funded school district, before acquiring title to real property for school use, shall obtain written approval from the California Department of Education using the following procedures:

(a) Request a preliminary conference with a consultant from the School Facilities Planning Division and in consultation review and evaluate sites under final consideration.

(b) Contact the School Facilities Planning Division of the California Department of Education to obtain a "School Facilities Planning Division Field Site Review," form SFPD 4.0, published by the California Department of Education, as last amended in December 1999 and incorporated into this section by reference, in toto, which lists the site options in order of merit according to the site selection standards delineated in Section 14010.

(c) Prepare a statement of policies as delineated on the "School Facilities Planning Division School Site Report," form SFPD 4.02, as last amended in December 1999 and incorporated into this section by reference, in toto, covering the range and organization of grades to be served, the transportation of pupils, and the ultimate maximum pupil enrollment to be housed on the site. Prepare a statement showing how the site is appropriate in size as justified by the school district's Facilities Master Plan, including acreage increases above the California Department of Education recommendation made to compensate for off-site mitigation. A school district may choose, in place of a master plan, a developer fee justification document or a five-year plan if it addresses enrollment projections, needed schools, and site sizes.

(d) Prepare maps showing present and proposed school sites, significant roads or highways, unsanitary or hazardous installations, such as airports or industries and the indicated boundary of the pupil attendance area to be served as delineated on form SFPD 4.02.

(e) Meet with appropriate local government, recreation, and park authorities to consider possible joint use of the grounds and buildings and to coordinate the design to benefit the intended users as required by Education Code Section 35275.

(f) Give written notice to the local planning agency having jurisdiction to review the proposed school site or addition to an existing school site and request a written report from the local planning agency of the investigations and recommendations for each proposed site with respect to conformity with the adopted general plan as required by Public Resources Code Section 21151.2 and Government Code Section 65402.

(g) Comply with Education Code Sections 17212 and 17212.5, with particular emphasis upon an engineering investigation made of the site to preclude locating the school on terrain that may be potentially hazardous:

(1) The geological and soils engineering study shall address all of the following:

(A) Nature of the site including a discussion of liquefaction, subsidence or expansive soils, slope, stability, dam or flood inundation and street flooding.

(B) Whether the site is located within a special study zone as defined in Education Code Section 17212.

(C) Potential for earthquake or other geological hazard damage

(D) Whether the site is situated on or near a pressure ridge, geological fault or fault trace that may rupture during the life of the school building and the student risk factor.

(E) Economic feasibility of the construction effort to make the school building safe for occupancy.

(2) Other studies shall include the following:

(A) Population trends

(B) Transportation

(C) Water supply

(D) Waste disposal facilities

(E) Utilities

(F) Traffic hazards

(G) Surface drainage conditions

(H) Other factors affecting initial and operating costs.

(h) Prepare an environmental impact report, or negative declaration in compliance with the Environmental Quality Act, Public Resources Code, Division 13, (commencing with Section 21000 with particular attention to Section 21151.8). As required by Education Code Section 17213, the written findings of the environmental impact report or negative declaration must include a statement verifying that the site to be acquired for school purposes is not currently or formerly a hazardous, acutely hazardous substance release, or solid waste disposal site or, if so, that the wastes have been removed. Also, the written findings must state that the site does not contain pipelines which carry hazardous wastes or substances other than a natural gas supply line to that school or neighborhood. If hazardous air emissions are identified, the written findings must state that the health risks do not and will not constitute an actual or potential danger of public health of students or staff. If corrective measures of chronic or accidental hazardous air emissions are required under an existing order by another jurisdiction, the governing board shall make a finding that the emissions have been mitigated prior to occupancy of the school.

(i) Consult with, or demonstrate that the lead agency, if other than the district preparing the environmental impact report or negative declaration, has consulted with the appropriate city/county agency and with any air pollution control district or air quality management district having jurisdiction, concerning any facilities having hazardous or acutely hazardous air emissions within one-fourth of a mile of the proposed school site as required by Education Code Section 17213.

(j) For purposes of Environmental Site Assessment, school districts shall comply with Education Code sections 17210.1, 17213.1, and 17213.2.

(k) Follow the recommendations of the State Superintendent of Public Instruction report based upon the Department of Transportation, Division of Aeronautics, findings, if the proposed site is within two miles of the center line of an airport runway or proposed runway as required by Education Code Section 17215.

(l) Follow the standards for school site selection in Section 14010 of this article.

(m) Conduct a public hearing by the governing board of the school district as required in Education Code Section 17211 to evaluate the property using the standards described in Section 14010 of this article. The school district's facility advisory committee may provide an evaluation of the proposed site to the governing board.

(n) Submit the request for exemption from a standard in Section 14010 of this article, with a description of the mitigation that overrides the standard, to the California Department of Education.

(o) Certify there are no available alternative school district-owned sites for the project deemed usable for school purposes by the California Department of Education or certify that the school district intends to sell an available alternative school district-owned site and use the proceeds from the sale for the purchase of the new school site.


Authority cited:

Education Code 17251(b)

Education Code 33031


Education Code 17070.50

Education Code 17072.12

Education Code 17210.1

Education Code 17211

Education Code 17212

Education Code 17213

Education Code 17251(b)

(Amended By Register 2000, No. 44)