(a) There is established within the State Board of Education an Office of Ombudsman for Public Education ("Office"), which shall be headed by an ombudsman appointed by the State Board of Education.
(b)(1) The Ombudsman shall be a District resident within 180 days of appointment.
(2) The Ombudsman shall serve for a term of 5 years, and may be reappointed.
(3) After notice and an opportunity to be heard, the Ombudsman may be removed only for cause that relates to the Ombudsman’s character or efficiency by a 2/3 vote of the State Board of Education.
(c) If a vacancy in the position of ombudsman occurs as a consequence of resignation, disability, death, or other reasons other than the expiration of the term, the State Board of Education shall appoint an ombudsman to fill the unexpired term within 75 days of the occurrence of the vacancy.
(d) The purpose of the Ombudsman is to serve as a neutral resource for current and prospective public school students and their parents or guardians in the resolution of complaints and concerns regarding public educationin a way that, in the opinion of the Office, furthers students' best interests.
(d-1) The Ombudsman shall serve as the exclusive personnel authority for employees of the Office, and may hire staff to support the Office's operations consistent with the Office's budget.
(d-2) The Ombudsman shall have exclusive authority to administer the Office's budget, subject to the oversight of the State Board of Education to ensure compliance with District law.
(e) For the purposes of this chapter, the term “public school” means District of Columbia Public Schools and public charter schools in the District of Columbia.
(June 12, 2007, D.C. Law 17-9, § 602, 54 DCR 4102; Apr. 27, 2013, D.C. Law 19-284, § 3(a), 60 DCR 2312; Feb. 22, 2014, D.C. Law 20-76, § 102(a), 61 DCR 39; Apr. 7, 2017, D.C. Law 21-252, § 3(a), 64 DCR 1656.)
Effect of Amendments
The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-284 rewrote the section; and added “for Public Education” to the section heading.
The 2014 amendment by D.C. Law 20-76 added (d) and (e).
Applicability of D.C. Law 21-252: § 6 of D.C. Law 21-252 provided that the change made to this section by § 3(a)(4) of D.C. Law 21-252 is subject to the inclusion of the law’s fiscal effect in an approved budget and financial plan. Therefore that amendment has not been implemented.
For temporary (90 days) repeal of D.C. Law 19-284, § 5, see § 7016 of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-130, July 30, 2013, 60 DCR 11384, 20 DCSTAT 1827).
For temporary (90 days) repeal of D.C. Law 19-284, § 5, see § 7016 of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-204, October 17, 2013, 60 DCR 15341, 20 DCSTAT 2311).
Section 7001 of D.C. Law 20-61 provided that Subtitle A of Title VII of the act may be cited as the “Subject to Appropriations Repealers Amendment Act of 2013”.
Applicability: Section 607 of Law 17-9 provided that this title shall apply upon Congressional enactment of Title IX. Congress enacted the provisions of Title IX in Pub. L. 110-33, approved June 1, 2007.
Applicability of D.C. Law 19-284: Section 5 of D.C. Law 19-284 provided that section 3 of the act shall apply upon the inclusion of its fiscal effect in an approved budget and financial plan, as certified by the Chief Financial Officer to the Budget Director of the Council in a certification published by the Council in the District of Columbia Register.