TASB Legislative Report

TASB Legislative Report
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House Pub Ed to Take Up At-Risk Student, CTE Bills

The House Public Education Committee is meeting Tuesday, March 7 at noon or upon adjournment of the House to consider the following bills. Watch the livestream.

 

HB 186 (Bernal) would require TEA to conduct a study to examine the costs of educating a student who is educationally disadvantaged and a student of limited English proficiency in public schools to determine whether the allotments are adequate and what the adequate allotments would be. TEA must prepare and submit the report by Jan. 1, 2018.

 

HB 223 (Howard) would allow compensatory education allotment funding to be used to provide child-care services or assistance with child-care expenses for students at risk of dropping out of school and to pay the costs associated with services provided through a life skills program for student parents.

 

HB 395 (Bell) would expand the career and technology education (CTE) allotment to students in approved technology application courses. The additional $50 allotment would apply to student enrolled in two or more advanced CTE courses for a total of three or more credits and students enrolled in two or more advanced technology application courses for a total of three or more credits. The SBOE must conduct a review of the CTE essential knowledge and skills and also the technology applications curricula. The SBOE would also have to amend its rules to consolidate technology applications courses for grades 9 through 12 with CTE courses for grades 9 through 12 and eliminate duplicative courses while ensuring certifications are aligned with the rigor of each individual course.

 

HB 587 (Bohac) would create an additional allotments for high school students enrolled in technology application courses. The allotment for technology applications courses would match the CTE education allotment,

 

HB 811 (King, K.) would extend state aid for tax reduction (ASATR) provided to certain school districts. ASATR is currently scheduled to expire on Sept. 1, 2017, but this bill would extend that deadline to Sept. 1, 2020 

 

HB 883 (King, K.) would increase the CTE allotment multiplication factor from 1.35 to 1.6.

 

HB 1245 (Cortez) would apply the CTE allotment to each full time student in grades 8 through 12 instead of 9 through 12.

 

House Approps Subcommittee on Education to Meet

The House Appropriations Subcommittee on Article III (Education) will meet at 7:30 a.m. on March 6 to discuss House budget recommendations for both public and higher education. No public or agency testimony will be taken. Watch the livestream.

 

Social Media Buzzing about Federal Voucher Bill

This past week, H.R. 610 has been the topic of many social media posts. The bill has generated a lot of opposition for creating a voucher program to be paid for with federal funds. If you are curious about H.R. 610, here’s the good, the bad and the ugly of the bill.

 

The good: H.R. 610 would eliminate the rule that established certain nutritional standards for the national school lunch and breakfast programs. These standards have become costly to school districts as the No Hungry Kids Act required school lunches to have more fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat or fat free milk, and to reduce sodium, saturated fats and trans fats in school meals. Eliminating the rule would render local control over the food that school districts can serve to their students.

 

The bad: H.R. 610 would repeal the entire Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, including the new Every Student Succeeds Acct. The bill would limit the authority of US Department of Education to only issue out block grants to qualified states.

 

The ugly: H.R. 610 would set up a voucher program, through which each state would distribute block grants to school districts based on the number of eligible children within the district’s geographical area. Each district must (1) distribute a portion of funds to parents who elect to enroll their child in a private school or to home-school their child; and (2) do so in a manner that ensures that such payments will be used for appropriate educational expenses. 

 

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