Governor Roy Cooper has still not publicly indicated what he plans to do with the 2022-2023 fiscal year State budget that passed the legislature last week. He can either sign it, veto it, or take no action and let it become law after 10 days. Since the budget was presented to him on July 1, he has until July 11 to take action. For more on last week’s legislative action on the budget and what it includes for education, click here to access last week’s legislative update.
During the last week of session, the legislature sent dozens of bills to Governor Cooper, and yesterday he signed 11 of those bills into law, two of which include education provisions.
SB 496: DOI Omnibus Bill (primary sponsors: Senators Todd Johnson, R-Union; Chuck Edwards, R-Henderson; Tom McInnis, R-Richmond) was signed into SL 2022-46 on Thursday. Section 6 of this bill requires LEAs to provide the Commissioner of Insurance with a list of all its insurable buildings, equipment and contents of the buildings, and their insurance values by October 1 each year. Section 6 also requires LEAs to provide the Commissioner with copies of insurance policies when purchasing insurance from an authorized company.
SB 265: Bond Information Transparency/LGC Toolkit II (primary sponsors: Senators Todd Johnson, R-Union; Carl Ford, R-Rowan) was signed into SL 2022-53 on Thursday. SB 265 requires local governments to provide additional disclosures regarding bond referenda and requires more monitoring and oversight of local governments’ financial operations. Click here for an official bill summary.
The State Board of Education (SBE) met for its monthly meeting on Thursday. The agenda was relatively light, and Board members heard brief presentations on compelling evidence for effective summer programing, which used data showing the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on student performance to make recommendations for summer learning programs, and the North Carolina High School Athletic Association’s (NCHSAA) updated rules and schedule of fee sharing for playoff games. These NCHSAA updates follow the implementation of a 2021 session law and a memorandum of understanding that require more transparency from the NCHSAA. SBE general counsel, Allison Schafer, explained that the SBE is not tasked with approving the updated rules, but if the Board has any objections to the rules, it can share that with the NCHSAA and/or take a vote to invalidate rules.
The Board was also presented with the results of a dual enrollment opportunity study that was required by the 2021 State budget (Section 7.85). The study looked at the three pathways of the Career and College Promise (CCP) dual enrollment program: College Transfer, Career and Technical Education, and Cooperative Innovative High Schools. In the 2019-2020 school year, approximately 30% of all 12th graders participated in one the CCP pathways, and the presentation identified differences in disparities and equitable participation across the pathways. There was also discussion on factors contributing to CCP pathway access and success, including strong secondary-postsecondary education partnerships. DPI staff is preparing a policy proposal to address this necessary partnership for the August SBE meeting. Click here for the full report and click here for an executive summary of the report.
Prior to concluding the meeting, Board Chair Eric Davis stated that the Department of Health and Human Services’ (DHHS) StrongSchoolsNC Toolkit has retired, and that school staff, students, and families should now refer to the CDC’s Operational Guidance for K-12 Schools for information concerning COVID-19. Chair Davis explained that while the Toolkit is no longer in effect, DHHS staff will continue to update and share supplemental materials with school leaders as they prepare for the upcoming school year.
Click here to access all meeting materials.
Director of Governmental Relations
N.C. School Boards Association
Governmental Relations Research Specialist
N.C. School Boards Association