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NCSBA Legislative Update – August 16, 2019

NCSBA Legislative Update – August 16, 2019

This Week at the Legislature

Headlines of K-12 Education Bills

For more detailed bill summaries see Highlights of K-12 Education Bills below.

Bills with Senate Action

SB 230: NC Military and Veteran Act of 2019

SB 295: Standards of Student Conduct

SB 681: Rur Hlth Care/Loc. Sales Tax Flex/Util. Acct.

Bill on the Governor’s Desk

SB 438: Excellent Public Schools Act of 2019

 

Highlights of K-12 Education Bills

Bills with Senate Action

SB 230: NC Military and Veteran Act of 2019

  • Concurred in the Senate and sent to the Governor on Thursday, August 15
  • Primary Sponsors: Senators D. Davis, D-Greene; Brown, R-Onslow; Ballard, R-Watauga
  • Part I directs the SBE to adopt rules providing excused absences from school for children of members of the U.S. armed forces

 

SB 295: Standards of Student Conduct

  • Withdrawn from the Senate Calendar and referred to the Senate Education/Higher Education Committee
  • Requires public school unit boards to consult with teachers, school-based administrators, parents, and local law enforcement agencies when adopting policies and procedures governing student conduct and discipline
  • Requires public school unit boards to review current federal guidance issued by the US Department of Education on school discipline practices before adopting student conduct policies
  • Requires each public school unit board to annually submit a copy of its most up-to-date student discipline policies to DPI by September 1
  • Requires published student conduct policies and procedures to include the full range of responses to violations of disciplinary rules, including responses that do not remove a student from the classroom or school building
  • Allows public school unit boards to require that students and parents/guardians sign an acknowledgement that they have received a copy of student conduct policies and procedures
  • Clarifies that this bill does not regulate a public school unit board’s discretion to devise, impose, and enforce personal appearance codes
  • Applies to LEAs, charter schools, regional schools, innovative schools, and schools operated by the SBE and the University of North Carolina
  • Provides a temporary fix concerning the layoffs in the NC Virtual Public School (NCVPS) so that teachers may be employed for the upcoming fall semester
  • Standards of student conduct changes are effective beginning with the 2020-21 school year

 

SB 681: Rur Hlth Care/Loc. Sales Tax Flex/Util. Acct.

  • Failed to Concur in the Senate and conference committee to be appointed
  • Primary Sponsors: Senators Berger, R-Rockingham; Tillman, R-Randolph
  • The House added Part II of the bill which grants counties additional flexibility in using the local option sales and use tax authorized in G.S. 105 Article 46 without increasing the existing maximum tax rate—the local tax could be used for public school capital outlay purposes or to retire any indebtedness incurred by the county for public education purposes
    • That bill language was taken from HB 667: Local Option Sales Tax Flexibility, sponsored by Representatives Howard, R-Davie; Saine, R-Lincoln; Szoka, R-Cumberland; Hunter, D-Hertford—HB 667 passed the House but has not yet been considered in the Senate

 

Bill on the Governor’s Desk

SB 438: Excellent Public Schools Act of 2019

  • Conference report adopted and presented to the Governor on Wednesday, August 14
  • Primary Sponsor: Senator Berger, R-Rockingham
  • Note: the conference report removed the part of the bill that would have authorized LEAs to select their own K-3 diagnostic assessments, which would have allowed for the continued use of mCLASS
  • Establishes individual reading plans (IRPs) for K-3 students performing below grade level
  • Establishes a Digital Children’s Reading Initiative, which provides free tools and resources to assist with learning outside of school
  • Requires the Superintendent of Public Instruction to convene a task force to develop a Comprehensive Plan to Improve Literacy Instruction that will ensure literacy instruction in NC public schools is evidence-based, designed to improve student outcomes
  • Requires the NC Center for the Advancement of Teaching (NCCAT) to provide professional development in literacy instruction
  • Requires educator preparation programs (EPPs) to provide literacy training coursework for elementary education teachers
  • Requires the alignment of literacy curriculum and instruction with Read to Achieve
  • Requires DPI approval of local reading camp plans
  • Studies the phasing out of alternative assessments for third grade reading comprehension
  • Creates a uniform template for Read to Achieve data
  • Provides continuing education credits related to literacy for certain reading camp instructors and allows certain retired teachers to serve as reading camp instructors
  • Expands the Wolfpack WORKS program

 

 

Leanne E. Winner
Director of Governmental Relations
N.C. School Boards Association
(919) 747-6686

Bruce Mildwurf
Associate Director of Governmental Relations
N.C. School Boards Association
(919) 747-6692

Richard Bostic
Assistant Director of Governmental Relations
N.C. School Boards Association
(919) 747-6677

Rebekah Howard
Governmental Relations Research Specialist
N.C. School Boards Association
(919) 747-6688

Rebekah HowardNCSBA Legislative Update – August 16, 2019

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