AB 104 – Requires School Districts, County Offices Of Education And Charter Schools To Implement A Retention Policy, Grade Changes, And Graduation Exemptions For Specific Pupils

CATEGORY: Public Education Matters
CLIENT TYPE: Public Education
DATE: Nov 04, 2021

Existing law requires the governing board of a school district and a county superintendent of schools to adopt policies regarding pupil promotion and retention, and requires strict compliance with those policies. Until June 30, 2023, existing law makes certain funds available to school districts, county offices of education, charter schools, and state special schools to be used by August 31, 2022, to offer supplemental instruction and support and other similar activities.

AB 104 changes existing law and requires school districts, county offices of education and charter schools to comply with new requirements in three specific areas as following:

Pupil Retention

  • To implement a supplemental policy regarding the retention of pupils who received deficient grades in half of their coursework during the academic year of 2020-21 and who were in grades 9-11;
  • To schedule a meeting with the pupil or pupil’s parent/guardian/educational rights holder (hereinafter “Requesting Party”) within 30 calendar days of the written retention request;
  • During the retention meeting, discuss all available learning recovery options; consider the pupil’s academic data and other relevant information; and consider pupil’s individual education program.
  • To provide the Requesting Party notice of the retention decision; and
  • If the pupil’s retention request is denied, to allow the pupil a form of credit recovery for courses the pupil received a D or F letter grade in the 2020-21 academic year.

Pass/No Pass Grades

  • Allow parents, guardians or education rights holder of a pupil, or a pupil who is 18 years or older and who was enrolled in a high school course during the 2020–21 school year to apply to the pupil’s school district, county board of education, or charter school to change the letter grade for that course to a Pass or No Pass grade on the pupil’s transcript;
  • California State University is required to accept the grade change and private postsecondary institutions are encouraged to accept the grade change. Private postsecondary institutions are required to notify the Department of whether they will accept the change transcripts for admission purposes.
  • The Department must develop the application for the grade change request.

Exemption from Local Graduation Requirements

  • Pupils in their 3rd and 4th year of high school who are not on track to graduate in 4 years in the 2020-21 or 2021-22 school year, must be given the opportunity to complete the statewide coursework required for graduation, which may include allowing the pupil a 5th year of instruction.

AB 104 was an urgency statute, which means it was effective upon approval by the governor. This bill became law on July 1, 2021. School districts, county office of education and charter schools should review your retention policies and ensure they adopted the required supplemental policy and comply with AB 104.

(AB 104 adds Sections 48071, 49066.5, and 51225 to the Education Code; this bill was an urgency bill and became effective immediately.)

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