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                                                                  H.B. No. 1170




AN ACT
relating to the award of higher education course credit for the completion of certain military training and to readmission to a public institution of higher education of students who withdraw to perform active military service. BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS: SECTION 1. Subchapter F, Chapter 51, Education Code, is amended by adding Section 51.3041 to read as follows: Sec. 51.3041. AWARD OF COURSE CREDIT FOR MILITARY TRAINING. (a) In this section, "institution of higher education" has the meaning assigned by Section 61.003. (b) An institution of higher education shall consider, in determining whether to award to a student course credit toward a degree offered by the institution for the student's completion of certain military training: (1) any official military record presented to the institution by the student that: (A) describes the substance of the training completed by the student; and (B) verifies the student's successful completion of that training; and (2) whether the substance of that training satisfies the purpose of the course for which the student seeks credit as described in the institution's course catalog. (c) This section applies to a student who has completed certain military training and is admitted to the institution, including a student who is readmitted under Section 51.9242. SECTION 2. (a) Subchapter Z, Chapter 51, Education Code, is amended by adding Section 51.9242 to read as follows: Sec. 51.9242. READMISSION OF STUDENT WHO WITHDRAWS TO PERFORM ACTIVE MILITARY SERVICE. (a) This section applies only to a student who withdraws from an institution of higher education to perform active military service as a member of the United States armed forces or the Texas National Guard, except that this section does not apply to a student who withdraws from an institution solely to perform one or more training exercises as a member of the Texas National Guard. (b) For any academic term that begins after the date a student described by Subsection (a) is released from active military service but not later than the first anniversary of that date, the institution of higher education from which the student withdrew shall readmit the student, without requiring reapplication or charging a fee for readmission, if the student is otherwise eligible to register for classes at the institution. On readmission of the student under this subsection, the institution shall: (1) provide to the student any financial assistance previously provided by the institution to the student before the student's withdrawal if the student meets current eligibility requirements for the assistance, other than any requirement directly affected by the student's service, such as continuous enrollment or another similar timing requirement; and (2) allow the student the same academic status that the student had before the student's withdrawal, including any course credit awarded to the student by the institution. (c) An institution of higher education may adopt rules requiring reasonable proof from a student of the fact and duration of the student's active military service. (b) Section 51.9242, Education Code, as added by this Act, applies beginning with readmissions to a public institution of higher education for the first semester or other academic term that begins after this Act takes effect. SECTION 3. This Act takes effect immediately if it receives a vote of two-thirds of all the members elected to each house, as provided by Section 39, Article III, Texas Constitution. If this Act does not receive the vote necessary for immediate effect, this Act takes effect September 1, 2005. ______________________________ ______________________________ President of the Senate Speaker of the House I certify that H.B. No. 1170 was passed by the House on April 6, 2005, by the following vote: Yeas 142, Nays 0, 1 present, not voting; and that the House concurred in Senate amendments to H.B. No. 1170 on May 23, 2005, by a non-record vote. ______________________________ Chief Clerk of the House I certify that H.B. No. 1170 was passed by the Senate, with amendments, on May 20, 2005, by the following vote: Yeas 31, Nays 0. ______________________________ Secretary of the Senate APPROVED: __________________ Date __________________ Governor