The Governor signed Assembly Bill (“AB”) 2109 on August 20, 2018, which makes various changes in law regarding general education students with a temporary disability receiving individual instruction in the home or hospital. The changes in law are effective on January 1, 2019, and this Legal Update will detail the changes in law. Also, for your convenience, included with this Legal Update is a document showing the additions and deletions in statutory law as a result of AB 2109.
Please note that for special education students, the determination of whether or not a student should receive home-hospital instruction should be made in accordance with the student’s Individualized Education Program (“IEP”) team in accordance with 5 CCR § 3051.4 and the student should not be referred back to the student’s district of residence even if the student is attending the current district through an interdistrict transfer or if the student is enrolled in a charter school. In addition, this law is not intended to limit the rights for special education students with a temporary disability.
The law currently in effect provides that a general education student with a temporary disability, which makes attendance in the regular day classes or alternative education program in which the student is enrolled impossible or inadvisable, shall receive individual instruction provided by the school district in which the pupil is deemed to reside. This resulted in students enrolled in charter schools or attending a district through an interdistrict transfer to be disenrolled and referred back to the student’s district of residence to address home-hospital instruction requests.
The current law also requires districts who have a student placed in a hospital or other residential health facility located within the district’s boundaries to treat the student as a resident (and provide individual instruction) even if the student’s parents reside outside of the district. Again, this results in students being disenrolled from the charter school or district the student was attending through an interdistrict transfer.
AB 2109 allows, but does not require, a school district or charter school to continue to allow the student to be enrolled in the school even though the student has been placed for the entire school week in a hospital or other residential health facility and is receiving individual instruction from the district in which the hospital or other residential health facility is located. The purpose of the change in law is to facilitate the student’s timely reentry from the hospital or other residential health facility back in the school the student was attending prior to the health issue.
AB 2109 also allows, but does not require, the student to attend a partial school week at the school the student attended prior to the health issue and to also receive individual instruction at the hospital or other residential health facility. For example, a student receiving medical treatment in a hospital on Monday and Tuesday may receive individual instruction from the district in which the hospital is located and on Wednesday through Friday the student could receive instruction from the school the student attended prior to the health issue. Also, a student who attends a school operated by a school district or a charter school, who is subsequently enrolled in individual instruction in a hospital or other residential health facility for a partial week, shall be entitled to attend school in his or her school district of residence, or receive individual instruction provided by the school district of residence in the student’s home, on days in which he or she is not receiving individual instruction in a hospital or other residential health facility, if he or she is well enough to do so.
For purposes of computing Average Daily Attendance (“ADA”), the district in which the hospital or other residential health facility is located may only claim ADA for the days of the week the student is receiving individual instruction and the school the student attended prior to the health issue (or, as applicable, the student’s district of residence) may only claim ADA for the days the student attends the school. The total combined ADA cannot exceed five school days or the equivalent – each hour of individual instruction may be counted as one day of attendance.
AB 2109 provides a right for the student to return to the school, including a charter school, the student attended before receiving individual instruction in the hospital or other residential health facility if the student is well enough to attend school and returns prior to the end of the school year in which the individual instruction was initiated. Accordingly, all schools must re-enroll a student who receives individual instruction (home-hospital instruction) in another school district, but is well enough to return back to the original school during the same school year.
The parents of the student placed in a hospital or other residential health facility have the primary responsibility to notify the respective school or charter school of the student’s placement.
Individual instruction in a student’s home shall commence no later than five working days after a school district has determined the student shall receive this instruction within the student’s home.
AB 2109 authorizes a school district, county office of education, and a charter school to issue an honorary high school diploma to a student who is terminally ill. The honorary diploma must be clearly distinguishable from a regular diploma.
Please contact our office with questions regarding this Legal Update or any other legal matter.
Legal Update written by Carl D. Corbin, General Counsel.
The information in this Legal Update is provided as a summary of law and is not intended as legal advice. Application of the law may vary depending on the particular facts and circumstances at issue. We, therefore, recommend that you consult legal counsel to advise you on how the law applies to your specific situation.
© 2018 School and College Legal Services of California
All rights reserved. However, SCLS grants permission to any current SCLS client to use, reproduce, and distribute this Legal Update in its entirety for the client’s own non-commercial purposes.
 Education Code § 48207(b).
 Education Code § 48207.3(b).
 Education Code § 48207(c).
 Education Code § 48207(d).
 Education Code § 48207.3(a).
 Education Code § 48208(a).
 Education Code § 48207.5.
 Education Code § 51225.5(a)(2).