Legislative Alerts

NCSBA Legislative Update – June 21, 2019

NCSBA Legislative Update – June 21, 2019

This Week at the Legislature

NCSBA is still working hard to combat a Senate budget provision (Section 7.48, pg. 56) that would allow county commissioners to take away the voice of local school boards in budget negotiations. The following video illustrates and describes the negative effects that this budget provision would have on the students that you serve.

CLICK HERE FOR VIDEO

Please share this video with your contacts and encourage them to reach out to your legislators about this pressing issue.

Click here to see House representation by county.

Click her to see Senate representation by county.

Click here to read an article that further explains the Senate budget provision.

State budget negotiations are in their waning days. The Education K-12 portion is one the last pieces of the puzzle to get resolved. Unresolved issues are now being negotiated between House Speaker Tim Moore and President Pro Tem Phil Berger. Speaker Moore told House members on Thursday that they can expect to vote on the compromise budget next week, before many members disperse for July 4th vacation. To see other key budget provisions that NCSBA is discussing with negotiators click here.

Education K-12 bills are still making their way through committees and floor votes. Below we have outlined the progress of many bills mentioned in last week’s update, as well as other bills that have resurfaced.

 

Movement of K-12 Education Bills

Bills Sent to the Governor

HB 57: Create Term for Public Schools & Codify NCVPS

  • Presented to the Governor on Friday, June 21
  • Primary Sponsors: Representatives Elmore, R-Wilkes; Johnson, R-Cabarrus; Horn, R-Union
  • Defines a public school unit as a local school administrative unit, a charter school, a regional school, or a school providing elementary or secondary instruction operated by the State Board of Education, such as innovative schools and schools for students with visual and hearing impairments, or the University of North Carolina, such as the NC School of the Arts high school, NC School of Science and Mathematics, and UNC Laboratory Schools
  • Codifies the NC Virtual Public School

 

Bills with House Action

HB 37: Child Sex Abuse/Extend Statute of Limitations

  • Passed the House 104-10 and referred to the Senate Rules committee
  • Primary Sponsors: Representatives Riddell, R-Alamance; White, R-Johnston; Torbett, R-Gaston; B. Turner, D-Buncombe
  • Requires two hours of training in even numbered years beginning in 2020 on child sex abuse and sex trafficking for teachers, instructional support personnel, principals, assistant principals, and other school personnel who work directly with students
  • Extends the statute of limitations for a civil action for child sexual abuse so that a plaintiff has until age 38 to commence an action

 

SB 219: Modify Teacher Licensing Requirements

Addresses the statewide teacher shortage by making it easier to recruit and retain full-time teachers.

  • Conference report adopted by the House 107-1 and awaiting an up or down vote in the Senate
  • Primary Sponsors: Senators McInnis, R-Richmond; Tillman, R-Randolph; Johnson, R-Union
  • The conference report combines SB 219 with HB 521: Transitional License/Teacher from Other State, which is sponsored by Representatives Clemmons, D-Guilford; Horn, R-Union; Riddell, R-Alamance; Gailliard, D-Nash.
  • Creates a three-year nonrenewable “limited license” for:
    • Individuals who were issued an initial professional license (IPL) but have not yet qualified for a continuing professional license (CPL)
    • Out-of-state applicants that do not have an IPL or a CPL, but have a current teacher license in good standing and at least three years of teaching experience
    • A military spouse who holds a current teaching license in another state
    • (An individual’s limited license can only be used in the LEA that requested it)
  • Provides a one-year IPL extension for elementary and special education teachers
  • Extends the timeframe to pass testing requirements for a CPL from two years to three years
  • Authorizes LEAs to determine experience credit for teachers from other states to pay them at the commensurate level on the State salary schedule during the first year of the license
  • Reduces the number of years required to get a lifetime teaching license from 50 years to 30 years
  • Authorizes emergency rulemaking by the State Board of Education to implement the requirements of the bill in accordance with its timeline (many teachers’ licenses are expiring on June 30, 2019)
  • Click here to read a News & Observer article that explains the effect that this bill has on teachers with expiring licenses

 

SB 227: TP3/Principal Fellows Consolidation

  • Passed the House 107-0 and returned to the Senate for concurrence
  • Primary Sponsor: Senator Tillman, R-Randolph
  • Maintains the existing administration of the Transforming Principal Preparation Program (TP3) for current grant recipients until 2021 (previously, the TP3 program was to be transferred to the control of the Principal Fellows Commission on July 1, 2019)
  • Merges the TP3 and the Principal Fellows Program on July 1, 2021 to become the North Carolina Principal Fellows and TP3 Commission
  • Click here to read a summary of the bill by the NC Association of School Administrators

 

SB 366: 10th Grade/College Transfer Pathways

  • Passed the House 108-0 and returned to the Senate for concurrence
  • Primary Sponsors: Senators McInnis, R-Richmond; B. Jackson, R-Sampson
  • Expands the career and technical education pathway for high school freshmen and sophomores to include business technologies courses (current law provides career and technical education pathways for high school freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors)
  • Modifies the college transfer pathway to include certain sophomores (the previous edition of the bill included freshmen – current law already includes juniors and seniors)
  • Requires that those sophomores receive academic advising on entering early college and get parental consent before participating in the pathway
  • Requires the SBE to include certain individuals as qualified to contract as adjunct instructors with LEAs for career and technical education programs

 

SB 391: Expand Youth Internship Opportunities

  • Approved by the House Education K-12 committee and referred to the House Commerce committee
  • Primary Sponsors: Senators Ballard, R-Watauga; Gunn, R-Alamance; Newton, R-Cabarrus
  • Provides a limited exception to the prohibition of 16-18-year-old students participating in supervised, practice experiences with employers in occupations declared by the Commissioner of Labor to be detrimental to the health and well-being of youth
  • The House Education K-12 committee approved changes that clarifiy that the Commissioner of Labor must make the required findings that would allow an eligible student to qualify for the exception

 

SB 392: Various Charter School Changes

  • Approved by the House Education K-12 committee and referred to the House Rules committee
  • Primary Sponsors: Senators Ballard, R-Watauga; Brown, R-Onslow; Newton, R-Cabarrus
  • Designates the Superintendent of Public Instruction as an applicable elected representative who may approve bonds to finance or refinance a charter school facility
  • The House Education K-12 committee approved changes that merged the bill with SB 522: Various Changes to Charter School Laws, which clarifies charter school renewal standards, requires background checks for charter boards of directors, and increases the cap on enrollment growth of virtual charter schools participating in the pilot program

 

SB 399: Rehire High-Need Teachers

  • Approved by the House Pensions and Retirement committee and referred to the House Rules committee
  • Primary Sponsors: Senators Horner, R-Nash; Berger, R-Rockingham; Chaudhuri, D-Wake
  • Allows teachers who retired on or before February 1, 2019 to return to work in high-need schools (Title I schools or schools with an overall school performance grade of D or F) without adversely impacting the retired teachers’ benefits
  • The House Pensions and Retirement committee approved changes to the bill that add language from Section 38.25(f)-(i) in the Senate version of the budget (HB966), which requires the following:
    • If the IRS determines that the Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement System (TSERS) would be jeopardized by allowing retired teachers to return to work in high-need schools while receiving retirement benefits, this act would be repealed 30 days from receipt of that determination
    • The State Treasurer would notify all LEAs of the repeal (and LEAs would notify all high-need retired teachers) and publicly post the information on the Department of the State Treasurer website
    • Any beneficiary employed by a LEA to teach as a high-need retired teacher would not be eligible to elect into a position that would lead him or her to be able to accrue any additional TSERS benefits

 

Bills with Senate Action

HB 362: 15-Point Scale for School Performance Grades

  • Will be heard in the Senate Education/Higher Education committee on Wednesday, June 26
  • Primary Sponsors: Representatives Horn, R-Union; Harris, D-Mecklenburg; Elmore, R-Wilkes; Autry, D-Mecklenburg
  • Makes the 15-point scale for school performance grades permanent

 

HB 411: Modify School Quality/Student Success Indicator

  • Approved by the Senate Rules committee and sent to the Senate floor
  • Primary Sponsors: Representatives Horn, R-Union; Corbin, R-Macon; Elmore, R-Wilkes; Johnson, R-Cabarrus
  • Combines the career and college readiness indicators used for school performance grades and for the purpose of compliance with federal law
  • The Senate Education/Higher Education committee changed the bill to include a requirement that the SBE include additional career and college readiness information on annual report cards – This additional information includes the percentage of high school students who achieved the minimum score required for admission into a constituent institution of The University of North Carolina on a nationally normed test of college readiness and the percentage of high school students enrolled in Career and Technical Education courses who score at Silver, Gold, or Platinum levels on a nationally normed test of workplace readiness

 

HB 924: Teacher Contract Changes

  • Passed the Senate 42-3 and placed on the House calendar for a concurrence vote on Monday, June 24
  • Primary Sponsors: Representatives D. Hall, R-Caldwell; Horn, R-Union
  • Clarifies eligibility for extended teacher contracts by defining a year of employment as not less than the standard 120 workdays performed as a teacher in a full-time permanent position (which had previously been the standard for career status)
  • The Senate amended the bill to include contents of SB 134: Economics & Financial Literacy Act, which establishes completion of an economics and personal finance course as a public high school graduation requirement – If the bill is sent to conference, it would be concerning this change
  • The following two News & Observer articles describe the potential impact that the financial literacy aspect of this bill could have on current high school courses

https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article228987929.html

https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article231478103.html

 

SB 500: Modify Advanced Math Course Enrollment

  • Senate voted not to concur with House changes to the bill and a conference committee was appointed (click here for conferee list)
  • Primary Sponsors: Senators Smith, D-Northampton; Tillman, R-Randolph; Chaudhuri, D-Wake
  • Makes the following modifications to the implementation of advanced math courses and opportunities for grades three and higher:
    • When practicable, LEAs must offer advanced learning opportunities in math in grades three through five
    • Any student in grades three through five who scores at the highest level on the EOG must be provided advanced learning opportunities in math approved for that student’s grade level
    • Before a parent or guardian can provide written consent for their student to be excluded or removed from an advanced learning opportunity for students in grades three through five or from an advanced math course for students in grades six and higher, it is required that the parent or guardian be informed that the student’s placement was determined by the student’s achievement at the highest level on the previous EOG or EOC
  • The House changed the bill to say that schools that did not offer Math I to eighth graders during the 2018-19 school year are not required to offer it for the 2019-20 school year, but are required to develop and submit an implementation plan by January 15, 2020

 

June 24-28 Legislative Meeting Calendar

Monday, June 24

3:00 pm – House: Rules – Legislative Building, rm 1228/1327 (audio)

Wednesday, June 26

11:00 am – Senate: Education/Higher Education – Legislative Building, rm 1027/1128 (audio)

 

 

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 – June 21, 2019
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NCSBA Legislative Update – June 14, 2019

NCSBA Legislative Update – June 14, 2019

This Week at the Legislature

The State budget remains on the minds of everyone on Jones Street. The most asked question inside the legislative building this week was “What do you know?” With the answer among lobbyists and rank and file legislators always being, “Not much.” Translation = budget negotiations are slow going. That said, House and Senate committees picked up the pace, moving along a number of education bills. Several of those bills look quite different today than they did this time last week. We have explained those bill changes below.

 

Movement of K-12 Education Bills

HB 37: Child Sex Abuse/Extend Statute of Limitations

  • Approved by the House Judiciary committee and referred to the House rules committee
  • Primary Sponsors: Representatives Riddell, R-Alamance; White, R-Johnston; Torbett, R-Gaston; B. Turner, D-Buncombe
  • The House Judiciary committee changed the bill to include required training on child sex abuse and sex trafficking for school personnel – Additionally, the bill extends the statute of limitations for a civil action for child sexual abuse so that a plaintiff has until age 38 to commence an action

 

HB 57: Create Term for Public Schools & Codify NCVPS

  • Passed the Senate 42-0 and returned to the House for concurrence
  • Primary Sponsors: Representatives Elmore, R-Wilkes; Johnson, R-Cabarrus; Horn, R-Union
  • Defines a public school unit as a local school administrative unit, a charter school, a regional school, or a school providing elementary or secondary instruction operated by the State Board of Education (SBE), such as innovative schools and schools for students with visual and hearing impairments, or the University of North Carolina, such as the NC School of the Arts high school, NC School of Science and Mathematics, and UNC Laboratory Schools
  • Codifies the NC Virtual Public School

 

HB 924: Teacher Contract Changes

  • Approved by the Senate Rules committee and had been withdrawn from the calendar twice before being calendared for Monday, June 17
  • Primary Sponsors: Representatives D. Hall, R-Caldwell; Horn, R-Union
  • Clarifies eligibility for extended teacher contracts by defining a year of employment as not less than the standard 120 workdays performed as a teacher in a full-time permanent position, which had previously been the standard for career status
  • The Senate previously amended the bill to include contents of SB 134: Economics & Financial Literacy Act, which establishes completion of an economics and personal finance course as a public high school graduation requirement

 

SB 219: Modify Teacher Licensing Requirements

  • Passed the House 116-0 – Senate voted not to concur with House changes to the bill and a conference committee was appointed (click here for conferee list)
  • Primary Sponsors: Senators McInnis, R-Richmond; Tillman, R-Randolph; Johnson, R-Union
  • Makes changes to the testing requirements for an initial professional teacher license (IPL), provides a one-year IPL extension for certain teachers, and implements a three-year nonrenewable license for teachers who were issued an IPL but did not qualify for a continued professional license (CPL)
  • The House made the following changes to the bill:
    • Provide a three-year transitional license for teachers from other states – teachers with a transitional license are not required to achieve a minimum score on a standardized test
    • Authorize LEAs to determine experience credit for teachers from other states to pay them at the commensurate level on the State salary schedule during the first year of the license
    • Clarify that a lifetime license be issued to a currently licensed teacher that “has completed 30 or more years of creditable service with the Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement System.” – previously, teachers could obtain a lifetime teaching license at 50 years

 

SB 227: TPS/Principal Fellows Consolidation

  • Approved by the House Education K-12 committee and referred to the House Rules committee
  • Primary Sponsor: Senator Tillman, R-Randolph
  • The House Education K-12 committee replaced the contents of the original bill that dealt with broadening charter school enrollment priority with a bill dealing with principal preparation programs
  • The new version of the bill does the following:
    • Maintains the existing administration of the Transforming Principal Preparation Program (TP3) for current grant recipients until 2021 (the TP3 program was to be transferred to the control of the Principal Fellows Commission on July 1, 2019)
    • TP3 and the Principal Fellows Program will merge on July 1, 2021 and become the North Carolina Principal Fellows and TP3 Commission
    • The NC Association of School Administrators wrote, “The goal of the merger of the two programs is to streamline oversight and administration of existing principal preparation programs, while generating more funds for applicants seeking forgivable loans to become effective principals.”

 

SB 366: 10th Grade/College Transfer Pathways

  • Approved by the House Education K-12 committee and referred to the House Rules committee
  • Primary Sponsors: Senators McInnis, R-Richmond; B. Jackson, R-Sampson
  • Expands academic transition pathway options for certain freshmen and sophomore high school students
  • The House Education K-12 committee made the following changes to the bill:
    • Expand the career and technical education pathway for high school freshmen and sophomores to include business technologies courses
    • Modify the college transfer pathway to include certain sophomores (the previous edition of the bill included freshmen – current law already includes juniors and seniors)
    • Require that those sophomores receive academic advising on entering early college and get parental consent before participating in the pathway
    • Require the SBE to include certain individuals as qualified to contract as adjunct instructors with LEAs for career and technical education programs
  • Current law provides career and technical education pathways for high school freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors and college transfer pathways for high school juniors and seniors – Click here to access a SB 366 bill summary that also explains current law

 

SB 399: Rehire High-Need Teachers

  • Approved by the House Education K-12 committee and referred to the House Rules committee with recommendation that it be referred to the House Pensions committee
  • Primary Sponsors: Senators Horner, R-Nash; Berger, R-Rockingham; Chaudhuri, D-Wake
  • Allows teachers who retired on or before February 1, 2019 to return to work in high-need schools (Title I schools or schools with an overall school performance grade of D or F) without adversely impacting the retired teachers’ benefits

 

SB 448: Amend Appt for Compact on Education/Military

  • Passed the House 116-0 and sent to the Governor
  • Primary Sponsor: Senator Brown, R-Onslow
  • Requires that an individual appointed by the Governor as Compact Commissioner represent at least one LEA with a high concentration of military children and removes the requirement that the individual be a licensed NC attorney

 

SB 500: Modify Advanced Math Course Enrollment

  • Passed the House 116-0 and returned to the Senate for concurrence
  • Primary Sponsors: Senators Smith, D-Northampton; Tillman, R-Randolph; Chaudhuri, D-Wake
  • Makes the following modifications to the implementation of advanced math courses and opportunities for grades three and higher:
    • When practicable, LEAs must offer advanced learning opportunities in math in grades three through five
    • Any student in grades three through five who scores at the highest level on the EOG must be provided advanced learning opportunities in math approved for that student’s grade level
    • Before a parent or guardian can provide written consent for their student to be excluded or removed from an advanced learning opportunity for students in grades three through five or from an advanced math course for students in grades six and higher, it is required that the parent or guardian be informed that the student’s placement was determined by the student’s achievement at the highest level on the previous EOG or EOC
  • The House went back and forth on several changes to the bill, but ultimately the only substantial change that was made to the Senate version is that schools that did not offer Math I to eighth graders during the 2018-19 school year do not have to offer it for the 2019-20 school year, but are required to develop and submit an implementation plan by January 15, 2020

 

Program Evaluation Division—Early Childhood Learning

A recent State report by the Program Evaluation Division (PED) found that more focus on early childhood learning will ultimately raise achievement in predominately disadvantaged school districts. The report states that predominately disadvantaged school districts that demonstrate average or above average school performance are doing so by third grade. These districts share the following common characteristics:

  • Provide Pre-K,
  • Maximize learning time by providing after school tutoring or more uninterrupted instruction time for students struggling in a specific subject area;
  • Obtain additional resources like federal grants and partnerships with local civic organizations that provide tutoring
  • Have local school boards that focus on policy and academic achievement rather than attempting to micromanage the school district; and
  • Attract and retain high-quality teachers and principals by providing a positive culture, teacher coaching and development, and principal autonomy

The report includes two recommendations for the General Assembly. First, low-performing school districts should be required to incorporate an early childhood component into their required plans for improvement. Second, an assessment of early childhood learning should be included in DPI’s comprehensive needs assessment process for school districts.

Click here to access the PED report and additional resources.

 

June 17-21 Legislative Meeting Calendar

Monday, June 17

2:30 pm – House: Rules – Legislative Building, rm 1228/1327 (audio)

Tuesday, June 18

1:00 pm – House: Education K-12 – Legislative Offices Building, rm 643 (audio)

Wednesday, June 19

11:00 am – Senate: Education/Higher Education – Legislative Building, rm 1027/1128 (audio)

 

 

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 – June 14, 2019
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Video Released on Capital Disputes Provision

Video Released on Capital Disputes Provision

Thanks to the availability of NCSBAC funds, NCSBA was able to create and promote the following video to combat county commissioners’ efforts to take away the voice of local school boards in budget negotiations.
CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE VIDEO

 

The Senate budget provision (Section 7.48, pg. 56) removes the school board’s ability to take county commissioners to court if capital funding is not resolved in mediation. While the court process has been used infrequently, it removes the pressure and incentive for county commissioners to work with school boards at every stage of the process to address school capital needs. This makes school capital completely at the whim of county commissioners, regardless of health or safety risks to the students that you serve. While you may not see an immediate looming issue for your district, over time this could create a severe school building deficit in your school district due to the age, condition, or capacity of your schools.

 

We are promoting the video on Facebook and Twitter, where it can be shared and retweeted.

Please share this video with your contacts and encourage them to reach out to your legislators about this pressing issue.

Click here to see House representation by county.
Click here to see Senate representation by county.

 

 

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 HowardVideo Released on Capital Disputes Provision
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NCSBA Legislative Update – June 7, 2019

NCSBA Legislative Update – June 7, 2019

This Week at the Legislature

The pace picked up at the General Assembly this week as more committees began meeting to hear bills that had crossed over from the other chamber. Conferees for budget negotiation were named and negotiators will get down to business starting next week. Click here to see the list of conferees.

The highlight of the week was a special convening of the General Assembly in the old chambers at the Capitol in honor of the 75th anniversary of D-Day. Following the special session, there was a ceremony held outside of the Capitol building honoring those killed on D-Day and specifically recognizing the 39 North Carolinians who sacrificed their lives. The following articles share more coverage of both the special session and the ceremony.

https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article231119213.html

https://www.wral.com/north-carolina-honors-veterans-for-75th-anniversary-of-d-day/18435383/

https://abc11.com/community-events/ww2-d-day-ceremony-at-nc-general-assembly/5335055/

 

Movement of K-12 Education Bills

The following bills were approved by the House Rules committee and will be calendared for next week.

SB 219: Modify Teacher Licensing Requirements

  • Primary Sponsors: Senators McInnis, R-Richmond; Tillman, R-Randolph; Johnson, R-Union
  • Makes changes to the testing requirements for an initial professional teacher license (IPL), provides a one-year IPL extension for certain teachers, and implements a three-year nonrenewable license for teachers who were issued an IPL but did not qualify for a continued professional license (CPL)
  • The House made the following changes to the bill:
    • Provide a three-year transitional license for teachers from other states
    • Authorize LEAs to determine experience credit for teachers from other states to pay them at the commensurate level on the State salary schedule during the first year of the license
    • Reduce the service requirement for a lifetime teaching license from 50 years to 30 years
    • Add “Individuals issued transitional licenses shall not be required to demonstrate preparation through achieving a prescribed minimum score on a standardized examination.”
    • Clarify that a lifetime license be issued to a currently licensed teacher that “has completed 30 or more years of creditable service with the Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement System.”

SB 448: Amend Appt for Compact on Education/Military

  • Primary Sponsor: Senator Brown, R-Onslow
  • An individual appointed by the Governor as Compact Commissioner is no longer required to be a licensed NC attorney, but rather an individual who represents at least one LEA with a high concentration of military children

SB 500: Modify Advanced Math Course Enrollment

  • Primary Sponsors: Senators Smith, D-Northampton; Tillman, R-Randolph; Chaudhuri, D-Wake
  • Makes the following modifications to the implementation of advanced math courses and opportunities for grades three and higher:
    • When practicable, LEAs shall offer advanced learning opportunities in math in grades three through five
    • Any grade three through five student who scores at the highest level on the EOG shall be provided advanced learning opportunities in math approved for that student’s grade level
    • Before a parent or guardian can provide written consent for their student to be excluded or removed from an advanced learning opportunity for students in grades three through five or from an advanced math course for students in grades six and higher, it is required that the parent or guardian be informed that the student’s placement was determined by the student’s achievement at the highest level on the previous EOG or EOC
  • The House made the following changes to the bill:
    • Remove the high school math placement requirement
    • Extend certain reporting and implementation deadlines by one year
    • Require the submission of implementation plans

 

The following bills were approved by the Senate Education/Higher Education committee and referred to the Senate Rules committee.

HB 57: Create Term for Public Schools & Codify NCVPS

  • Primary Sponsors: Representatives Elmore, R-Wilkes; Johnson, R-Cabarrus; Horn, R-Union
  • Codifies the NC Virtual Public School (NCVPS) program and defines a “public school unit” as a local school administrative unit, a charter school, a regional school, or a school providing elementary or secondary instruction operated by the SBE or the University of North Carolina
  • The Senate amended the bill to clarify that NCVPS is not a public school unit

HB 924: Teacher Contract Changes

  • Primary Sponsors: Representatives D. Hall, R-Caldwell; Horn, R-Union
  • Clarifies eligibility for extended teacher contracts by defining a year of employment as not less than the standard 120 workdays performed as a teacher in a full-time permanent position, which had previously been the standard for career status
  • The Senate amended the bill to add the contents of SB 134: Economics & Financial Literacy Act to the bill

 

State Board of Education Meeting — June 5 & 6

Board members and advisors met this week to discuss an array of topics including charter school approvals, equity strategies in public schools, and incorporating computer science into education standards. Digital learning and computer science curriculum were covered twice in this month’s meeting: once during a Special Committee on Digital Learning and Computer Sciences presentation and once during a Student Learning and Achievement Committee presentation. Students could start learning about computer science as early as kindergarten, where teachers could explain the importance of computer and account passwords. By incorporating computer science into NC’s education standards, specific courses wouldn’t be required, but rather the integration of the subject matter into already existing courses. SBE Chair Davis requested that the meeting minutes reflect a Board approval of computer science becoming part of NC’s education standards.

The Board also heard from staff in DPI’s Exceptional Children Division about a policy recommendation concerning autism spectrum disorder. With the number of autistic students increasing, staff members proposed a policy change in autism identification practices used in schools. Although some Board members expressed their concern about the changes being potentially more restrictive, the presenters explained that the changes would help give school staff a deeper clarity of autism as updated data and information have become available.

During the Board’s monthly legislative update, a 2019-20 budget comparison was presented.

Click here to access DPI’s 2019-20 budget information, which includes the budget comparison and House and Senate budget summaries.

Click here to access all Board materials.

 

June 10-14 Legislative Meeting Calendar

Monday, June 10

1:00 pm – Joint Legislative Program Evaluation Oversight Committee – Legislative Office Building, rm 544 (audio)

Friday, June 14

10:00 am – NC Child Well-Being Transformation Council – Legislative Office Building, rm 423

 

 

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 – June 7, 2019
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NCSBA Legislative Update – May 31, 2019

NCSBA Legislative Update – May 31, 2019

Senate Budget

The State budget process is like a four-quarter game if you will. We have reached the midpoint, or halftime. The House passed its version of the spending plan in the first quarter, and the Senate passed its proposal in the second quarter today. The third quarter is when House and Senate budget writers come together to create a compromise budget to send to the Governor. And you guessed it, Governor Cooper owns the fourth quarter. The end of regulation occurs on the day that Governor Cooper signs the bill, uses the veto stamp, or allows time to run out without taking action, which would cause the budget to automatically become law. Based on the odds in Vegas, pundits predict that this game is headed for overtime as a result of a budget veto. Below are the statistics from the second quarter.

 

We have updated our list of Senate budget provision summaries that affect K-12 education and included page numbers where each provision can be found in the most recently published version of the Senate budget (linked below). Note that these page numbers are subject to change following the Senate’s passage of the final version of its budget proposal today. Click here to view our Senate budget provision summaries.

Click here to view our summary of Senate budget appropriations.

 

The following are versions as amended by the Senate Appropriations/Base Budget Committee on Wednesday, May 29:

 

School Capital Senate Budget Provision

As was reported to you earlier this week, the Senate version budget bill includes a special provision (Section 7.48, pg. 55) that eliminates the ability for a local board of education to take their county commission to court over capital needs. NCSBA had planned to have an amendment run on the Senate floor to remove this provision from the Senate bill. We knew the likelihood of this amendment passing was not great and that our real work is to make sure it is not in conference report. After our sponsor had the amendment drafted, he consulted with us as to whether we really wanted to run the amendment because we ran the risk of triggering a Senate rule that until this session has not been used to anyone’s memory. The rule is:

After an amendment has been tabled or defeated on the Senate floor, the contents of such amendment or the principal provisions of its subject matter shall not be embodied in any other measure.

You might recall media coverage about this rule in the discussion over Medicaid expansion after an amendment was defeated on the Senate floor earlier this session. To read more about this click here.

Thus, the NCSBA Governmental Relations staff made the decision to not have the amendment considered and not run the risk of forcing the Senate leadership to insist under their rules that the provision had to be included.

During the Senate budget debate, an amendment on Medicaid expansion was ruled out of order and several other amendments were withdrawn because of the rule.

It is going to be critical that you communicate with all members of your legislative delegation about this provision. The following are talking points:

  • This Provision has absolutely nothing to do with the state budget. This issue deals with local dollars.
  • This is a solution in search of a problem. A dispute over capital rarely ends up in court. Litigation is absolutely the last resort. Why would a school board want to bite the hand that feeds it?
  • We have all heard about Union County, but it is an outlier. The dispute started off as a case about current expense appropriations, and capital got rolled into it. Last year, a senator helped create a win-win with a solution that both sides could live with. A year later we are back to picking a winner and a loser among these two elected bodies.
  • Sometimes a stick is needed to get someone to the table to negotiate in good faith. With this provision, you are essentially removing any sense of meaningful mediation because “the decision of the county commissioners is final.” It removes any incentive for county commissioners to work with their elected school board at every stage of the process.
  • The folks that really get hurt by this provision are the public-school students, teachers, and other staff that work in overcrowded or dilapidated conditions.
  • While no one wants to use taxpayer money on attorney bills, it is important that school boards, on behalf of students and teachers, be able to make a case to rectify deplorable conditions so that students have a chance to succeed.
  • From 1997 to 2015, only four (or .19%) of the 2,070 individual budget processes have gone to court. We know that one involved both current expense and capital, two only involved current expense, and we do not have information on the fourth.

 

June 3-7 Legislative Meeting Calendar

Wednesday, June 5

11:00 am – Senate: Education/Higher Education – Legislative Building, rm 1027/1128 (audio)

 

 

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 – May 31, 2019
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NCSBA Legislative Update – May 24, 2019

NCSBA Legislative Update – May 24, 2019

This Week at the Legislature

While the sun was shining bright outside the legislative building this week, it felt like the calm before the storm inside the building. Few committees met and not much happened in public view, but something is definitely brewing off in the distance. While the House passed its version of the State budget several weeks ago, the Senate is expected to present its version of the budget next week. Senate appropriations subcommittees will meet to review their portions of the budget on Tuesday, and subcommittee reports will be rolled together and sent to the Senate Appropriations/Base Budget committee. Senate floor votes are expected on Thursday and Friday.

The NCSBA Governmental Relations team plans to email special alerts throughout the week as we learn more about the Senate budget.

One bill of note that was filed this week and is already scheduled to be heard on the Senate floor next week is SB 674: Surry Co./Mt. Airy/Elkin City/Bd. Ed Partisan, sponsored by Senators Berger (R-Rockingham) and Ballard (R-Watauga). The bill would change the local board of education elections for Surry County, Mount Airy City, and Elkin City from nonpartisan to partisan. By our count, the current number of partisan boards in the State is 35.

The Program Evaluation Committee (PED) also received a brief presentation on the North Carolina Should Focus on Early Childhood Learning in Order to Raise Achievement in Predominantly Disadvantaged School Districts report. The report recommends:

  • requiring low performing school districts to include an early childhood improvement plan as a component of their required plans for improvement; and
  • requiring an assessment of early childhood learning as part of the Department of Public Instruction’s comprehensive needs assessment process for districts.

Draft legislation to be presented to the General Assembly was presented to the committee and will be voted on at their June meeting.

To view all materials on this report please click here.

 

 

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 – May 24, 2019
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NCSBA Legislative Update – May 17, 2019

NCSBA Legislative Update – May 17, 2019

This Week at the Legislature

It was a quiet week at the General Assembly. The House had no-vote sessions on Monday and Tuesday and few committee meetings during the remainder of the week. The House did debate and pass HB 667: Local Option Sales Tax Flexibility (Howard, R-Davie; Saine, R-Lincoln; Szoka, R-Cumberland; Hunter, D-Hertford), which is on the NCSBA Legislative Agenda (see below).

The Senate also had minimal committee and floor action, but the Senate Appropriations Committee chairs have been working behind closed doors to meet their end of May deadline for budget passage. Like the House, the Senate will include a tax reduction package in their appropriations bill. The Senate Finance Committee and the Senate Rules Committee approved SB 622: Tax Reduction Act of 2019 (Tillman, R-Randolph; Hise, R-Mitchell; Newton, R-Cabarrus) to increase the standard deduction for individuals, reduce the franchise tax for corporations, require sales tax collections by out-of-state sellers, and make other minor tax changes. The total cost of the tax changes is $5.3 million in FY 2019-20 and $144.6 million in FY 2020-21. With the exception of one democrat in support, the bill passed second reading on Thursday with a 26-19 vote along party lines. Third reading is scheduled for Monday night.

 

House Bill 667: Local Option Sales Tax Flexibility

This week the House approved House Bill 667 (Howard, R-Davie; Saine, R-Lincoln; Szoka, R-Cumberland; Hunter, D-Hertford) on second reading by a vote of 93-5 and on third reading by a vote of 107-5. The bill increases the Article 46 sales tax that counties can levy for “general purposes” from 1/4% to 1/2%, upon approval of voters in a referendum. The maximum county tax will be capped at 2.5% for 94 counties and 2.75% for Durham, Forsyth, Guilford, Mecklenburg, Orange, and Wake counties. 42 counties have approved an Article 46 tax since it was enacted in 2007 and may ask voters for another 1/4%. The remaining counties may ask voters for 1/2% but in 1/4% increments. The bill allows counties to specify on the ballot that the tax will be used for either general public purposes, public education purposes, or both. Public education purposes include the following:

  • Public school capital outlay or retirement of public-school debt,
  • Teacher salary supplements, and
  • Financial support of community colleges.

Click here to read the legislative staff summaries of HB 667, which includes a chart of county tax rates.

Click here to read NCSBA’s issue brief on school construction and capital.

 

Meetings with Education Chairs

Now that the Crossover deadline has passed, the Governmental Relations team is meeting with House and Senate Education Chairs and their policy advisors to discuss education bills of interest or concern to NCSBA. The team is encouraging Education Chairs to schedule bills for a vote in their committees. We are working with legislators and legislative staff to amend bills that do not conform to our legislative agenda.

 

Governor’s Commission on Access to Sound Basic Education – May 14

This week’s meeting consisted of commission member work groups presenting their draft priorities. Priority topics include finance and resources, teachers, principals, early childhood/“whole child”, and assessment and accountability. This meeting brought a change in dynamic as members heard more perspective from each other concerning how their previous and/or current career experience can help shape the commission’s priorities.

There was discussion on advocating for a tiered teacher salary schedule that would help close the teacher wage gap between low-wealth and high-wealth districts. Many members also voiced support for the idea of adding the teaching profession to the CTE (Career and Technical Education) pathways program. During the presentation by the assessment and accountability work group, commission member Police Chief Moore of Rocky Mount expressed concern about students being arrested at schools by SROs (school resources officers) rather than being given administrative discipline, which he believes is contributing to the school-to-prison pipeline and reducing students’ opportunities to be successful after graduation. All members expressed their desire to see students flourish and hope to promote equity as they continue to formulate their priorities.

Click here to access all agenda items and attachments.

 

May 20-24 Legislative Meeting Calendar

Monday, May 20

1:00 pm – Joint Legislative Program Evaluation Oversight Committee – Legislative Offices Building, rm 544 (audio)

 

 

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 – May 17, 2019
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NCSBA Legislative Update – May 10, 2019

NCSBA Legislative Update – May 10, 2019

2019 “Long” Session Crossover Week – Inside the Numbers

This has been a bizarre session and crossover week was no exception. Traditionally, both chambers have four voting sessions (Monday night-Thursday morning) per week. For most of the 2019 “long” session, the House cut their voting days in half, with no votes on Mondays and Tuesdays. The overall pace feels even slower than the 2017 “long” session when lawmakers filed the fewest number of bills of any “long” session this century. During the 2017 session, 208 bills were signed into law. So far this session, 12 new laws have passed, and only 6 of them required the Governor’s signature. At this point two years ago, the General Assembly voted to override 4 of Governor Cooper’s vetoes. This session: 1 veto, 0 overrides.

Thursday, May 9 was the self-imposed General Assembly “crossover” deadline. This is the last day for non-appropriation and non-tax bills to pass out of one chamber to still be considered “alive” for the remainder of the biennium (though many bills could technically find a way to “rise from the dead” until the 2020 session adjourns sine die).

The final days before “crossover” are typically a very hectic time with numerous committees meeting simultaneously, several daily sessions, and countless caucus meetings. Most years we experience very late nights, and often times the crossover deadline is extended. This year was different. Both chambers finished their work early – the House by two days, the Senate by one (that has never happened in recent memory). In all, 109 bills made crossover this past week. That’s about half the number of bills compared to the two previous crossover weeks (217 bills in 2017 and 203 bills in 2015).

 

2019 K-12 Education Bills to Make Crossover

Below are links to lists of notable K-12 education bills that have passed at least one chamber this session. The lists include bill number, short title, primary sponsors, description, and pertinent comments NCSBA has about a bill.

Click here to view House education K-12 bills that made crossover.

Click here to view Senate education K-12 bills that made crossover.

 

Update on Controversial Education Bills

Last week we highlighted two controversial bills that were seeing movement and had not yet made the crossover deadline.

SB 522: Various Changes to Charter School Laws (Senator Tillman, R-Randolph)

  • Our primary concern was that this bill authorized county commissioners to provide capital funding to charter schools. We were successful in having that section removed before the bill passed the Senate. However, the bill still contains a section lifting the enrollment cap for the 2 virtual charter schools. These schools are in their 4th year of operation and in every year both of them received a D school performance grade and did not meet growth.

 

SB 639: Education Funding Transparency (Senators Edwards, R-Henderson; Ballard, R-Watauga)

  • This bill required countless hours of unnecessary work for LEAs during the budget process. This bill never passed out of the Senate Education committee and thus did not make the crossover deadline.

 

We appreciate all of your efforts. Your calls and emails made a difference. Thank you!

 

Senate Budget Preparation

The House passed its proposed state budget last Friday with a final vote of 61-51. Attention now turns to the Senate as they develop their version of the budget.

The original budget calendar that was released 3 months ago had the Senate passing its budget proposal on Friday, May 24. Earlier this week Senate Majority Leader Harry Brown, who is also the senior Senate budget writer, confirmed to the media that the goal is to pass his chamber’s budget by the end of May. At that point, House and Senate leaders will begin working on a compromise budget to present to the Governor.

 

May 13-17 Legislative Meeting Calendar

Wednesday, May 15

8:30 am – House: Finance – Legislative Offices Building, rm 544 (audio)

 

 

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 – May 10, 2019
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NCSBA Legislative Update – May 3, 2019

NCSBA Legislative Update – May 3, 2019

This Week at the Legislature

This week has been full of activity. The House has been meeting late, voting on the budget, and taking up dozens of bills a day ahead of next week’s crossover deadline. The Senate had constant back-to-back committee meetings with long sessions. This is the time of year that controversial bills hit the fast track as we approach the crossover deadline. Three such bills on the move this week include SB 522, SB 639, and HB 798.

Senate Bill 522: Various Changes to Charter School Laws (Senator Tillman, R-Randolph) passed out of the Senate Education committee on Thursday after an amendment removed several sections. The amendment would authorize Boards of County Commissioners to provide capital funds to charter schools. Senator Tillman promised the Senate Education committee that while this bill says counties “may” provide capital to charters it will not be too long before the legislation will say “must” provide capital to charters. This is bad news! The current backlog for LEA school construction statewide is more than $8 billion. Where is the money for charter school construction going to come from? Who is going to own that building? Is the county going to invest money in a private building? Charter schools knew what they were signing up for – they made that choice. The bill’s next stop is scheduled to be the Senate Rules committee and then the Senate floor. Please contact your Senator and urge them to vote no.

Senate Bill 639: Education Funding Transparency (Senators Edwards, R-Henderson; Ballard, R-Watauga) was removed this week from the Senate Rules committee and referred to the Senate Education committee.

This legislation is not needed – it is already covered in state statute. G.S.115-429(c) states, “The board of county commissioners shall have full authority to call for, and the board of education shall have the duty to make available to the board of county commissioners, upon request, all books, records, audit reports, and other information…”

We urge finance officers, school board members, and superintendents to review this legislation and contact the three Senate Education Chairs if you have issues with this bill and request that this bill not be heard in committee. Senate Education Chairs:

  • Senator Ballard
    • Office phone: (919) 733-5742
    • Email: Deanna.Ballard@ncleg.net
  • Senator Horner
    • Office phone: (919) 715-3030
    • Email: Rick.Horner@ncleg.net
  • Senator Tillman
    • Office phone: (919) 733-5870
    • Email: Jerry.Tillman@ncleg.net

This proposed legislation mandates countless hours of extra work by all LEAs. A more efficient approach is to educate boards of county commissioners that they can request this information if they want it.

Click here for a more detailed analysis of SB 639.

House Bill 798: Low-Performing Schools (Representatives Elmore, R-Wilkes; Bell, R-Wayne; Brockman, D-Guilford) passed the House and was sent to the Senate on Friday afternoon. This bill would change the selection process for schools in the Innovative School District (ISD), require additional reporting of the local school board to county commissioners, and change the definition of a qualifying school. HB 798 would create a 4-year process that schools would go through before being selecting to the ISD beginning with the 2023-2024 school year. However, this bill also requires the SBE to select the lowest scoring school in the State based on school performance from each school year from 2019-2020 to 2022-2023 to be in the ISD.

 

House Budget

The House budget includes pay increases for teachers, principals, assistant principals, and noncertified personnel. Current salary schedules will stay in effect through December 31, 2019.

  • Teachers will receive an average 4.6% pay increase. (pgs. 76-80)
    • The “M” salary schedule will be reinstated and teachers who qualify will receive a 10% pay increase on their monthly salary.
    • The budget focuses on salary increases for teachers with at least 16 years of experience.
    • Teachers with 30 plus years of experience will earn an annual salary of at least $65,000.
  • Principals will receive an average 10% pay increase. (pgs. 80-84)
    • Principals monthly base salary from January 1, 2020 to June 30, 2020 is determined by school ADM, placement on the teacher “A” salary schedule plus 25%, and school growth.
    • Page 82 of the House budget provides a table outlining the principal salary structure.
    • Page 83 of the House budget provides a table of 2019-2020 principal bonuses for principals whose school was in the top 50% of school growth in the State during the previous school year.
  • Assistant principals will receive an average 6.3% pay increase. (pgs. 84-85)
    • Assistant principals monthly base salary from January 1, 2020 to June 30, 2020 is based on the “A” teacher salary schedule plus 20%.
  • Noncertified personnel will receive a 1% or $500 pay increase. (pg. 87)

Click here to view the House budget.

Click here to view the House budget money report.

 

Education Bills Passed by the House and Sent to the Senate

HB 714: Competency Based Assessment

  • Primary Sponsors: Representatives Horn, R-Union; Blackwell, R-Burke
  • This bill would direct the SBE to recommend steps for transition to a competency-based assessment and teaching model for all elementary and second students in NC.
  • Passed 114-0
  • Regular message sent to Senate

HB 895: Opportunity Gap Task Force

  • Primary Sponsors: Representatives Blackwell, R-Burke; Brockman, D-Guilford; Horn, R-Union; Meyer, D-Orange
  • This bill would establish the opportunity gap task force. The bill includes task force membership, the responsibilities of the task force, and who the task force should seek input from.
  • Passed 112-2
  • Regular message sent to Senate

HB 924: Teacher Contract Changes

  • Primary Sponsors: Representatives D. Hall, R-Caldwell; Horn, R-Union
  • This bill would define years of employment for a teacher as not less than 120 workdays in a full-time permanent position. If a teacher was on approved/legally entitled leave and did not work for at least 120 days, that year would not constitute a year of employment nor be considered a break in the continuity of consecutive years of employment.
  • Passed 113-0
  • Passed House 3rd reading

HB 933: Study Career/College Readiness

  • Primary Sponsors: Representatives Blackwell, R-Burke; Clemmons, D-Guilford; Horn, R-Union; Hardister, R-Guilford
  • This bill would establish the study of career and college readiness in NC schools and how to incorporate career and college readiness measures into school performance grades for high schools.
  • Passed 114-0
  • Regular message sent to Senate

 

Education Bill Passed by the Senate and Sent to the House

SB 621: Testing Reduction Act of 2019

  • Primary Sponsors: Senators Tillman, R-Randolph; Ballard, R-Watauga; Sawyer, R-Iredell
  • This bill would require LEAs to implement a plan to eliminate certain local standardized testing if the number of tests administered or the number of hours required for students to complete tests exceeds the State average.
  • Passed 48-0
  • Referred to House Rules

 

State Board of Education Meeting—May 2

As board members received the monthly legislative update during this Thursday’s meeting, there was much discussion centered around SB 134: Economics & Financial Literacy Act. There were questions regarding what type of economics would be taught in this specific course compared to a standard civics and economics course, what textbooks and resources would be used to teach this course, and what measures would be taken in discussing the racial wealth gap. The bill is included in Section 7.18 of the House budget (HB 966) with funding for professional development.

Another topic of lengthy discussion was the issue session presentation on the Maryland Department of Education’s implementation of equity in each local school district. Every LEA is required to have an equity plan in place, and every actor in each public agency has a commitment to equity. While Maryland’s and North Carolina’s definitions of equity share many commonalities, one of the main differences between the two states is that every measure of equity success in Maryland has a baseline, which is not the case in North Carolina. Board members agreed that implementing equity is vital, but they also confronted the reality that this would be a constant process of amending definitions and strategies to better exemplify our continuously evolving society and culture.

 

May 6-10 Legislative Meeting Calendar

Monday, May 6

9:30 am – House: Rules, Calendar, and Operations – Legislative Building, rm 1228/1327 (audio)

3:00 pm – Senate: Pensions and Retirement and Aging – Legislative Building, rm 1124/1224 (audio)

 

 **REMINDER**

The crossover deadline is next Thursday, May 9.

 

 

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 – May 3, 2019
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NCSBA Legislative Update – April 26, 2019

NCSBA Legislative Update – April 26, 2019

Legislative Public Policy Conference

The NCSBA Legislative Public Policy Conference is scheduled for next week on April 30 and May 1 in Raleigh at the NCSBA building.

Click the agenda button below to view our modified conference schedule.

CLICK HERE TO VIEW CONFERENCE AGENDA 

The registration rate is $325. Click here to register.

 

House Budget

There are 36 special provisions in the public education section of the budget. Many of them are repeated from year to year, deal directly with operations within DPI, or follow the money in the money report.

The Education, Appropriations committee is currently meeting, but we do not believe that any additional amendments will have substitutional effect on the education budget.

Click here to see our money report summary. Below are short summaries of the special provisions that we believe are particularly important to local boards of education.

H20 (pgs. 29-30)

  • Creates a definition of a public school as a local school administrative unit, a charter school, a regional school, or a school providing elementary or secondary instruction operated by the State Board of Education (SBE) or the University of North Carolina
  • Requires an annual census of school resources officers by the Center for Safer Schools – a report shall be based on the census and submitted to the Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee and SBE by March 1

H28 (pgs. 34-35)

  • Only allows changes in school calendar to be adopted when addressing severe weather, energy shortage, utility failure, public health or school safety crisis, school building or transportation emergency, or act of God
  • Allows teacher personal leave days to be transferred between LEAs
  • Restricts the use of teacher personal leave days to only be granted if requested at least five days in advance with a confirmed substitute

The following N&O article explains how this provision is an effort by lawmakers to ban future teacher rallies.

https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article229714994.html

H15A (pgs. 41-43)

  • Establishes the UpStart Virtual Early Learning pilot program (i.e. virtual pre-k)
    • SBE will contract with a third-party organization with experience in home-based educational technology programs for preschool-age children
    • SBE will select up to ten LEAs to participate
    • Child eligibility: four years old on or before August 31 of the program year and at-risk
    • SBE will make a report on the program to the Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee by November 30 during each year of the pilot program

H25 (pgs. 44-45)

  • SBE shall approve no fewer than three K-3 assessment instruments designed by no fewer than three vendors for selection by LEAs (the current requirement is one)
  • The State Superintendent’s Evaluation Panel shall select the vendors by August 1, 2019

H41 (pgs. 47-54)

  • Defines unfit instructional materials as “(i) obscene, (ii) inappropriate to the age, maturity, or grade level of the students, or (iii) not aligned with the standard course of study
  • Requires LEAs to evaluate and adopt instructional and supplemental materials/textbooks (previously done by the state) and maintain an instructional materials repository
  • Allows parents to withhold their consent to students’ participation in health and safety programs
  • (this provision contains the same language as House Bill 315, which has passed the House)

H34 (pg. 55)

  • Calculates school performance grades using 51% school achievement score and 49% school growth score
  • Reinstates the 15-point grading scale for school performance grades

H36A (pgs. 56-58)

  • Expands funds in the State Public School Fund (SPSF) for classroom teachers to include program enhancement (PE) teachers for grades K-12
  • With remaining funds in SPSF the SBE shall set teacher to student ratios for class size in grades 4-12
  • Adds dual language immersion for certain classes to the definition of “program enhancement”
  • Modifies allotment ratio to one PE teacher per 140 students

H18 (pg. 59)

  • Requires LEAs to publish a schedule of fees, charges, and solicitations approved by the LEA on their website by October 15 of each school year

H19 (pgs. 61-62)

  • SBE may approve up to four cooperative innovative high school applications that request additional funds – SBE shall prioritize LEAs that currently do not have a cooperative innovative high school

H43 (pgs. 67-68)

  • Allots $145.00 to each eligible classroom teacher as of January 1 each year for the purchase of classroom supplies – the $15 million of nonrecurring funds will cover six months of the year

 

Education Bills Passed by the House and Sent to the Senate

HB 434: Suicide Risk Referral/Mental Health/Teen Violence

  • Primary Sponsors: Horn, R-Union; Cunningham, D-Mecklenburg; Murphy, R-Pitt; White, R-Johnston
  • This bill would require LEAs, charter, regional, innovative, laboratory, and renewal schools to adopt and implement a suicide risk protocol, a mental health training program, and a policy against teen dating violence and abuse.
  • Passed 105-1

HB 493: Abuse & Neglect Resources

  • Primary Sponsors: White, R-Johnston; Horn, R-Union
  • This bill would require public schools to provide students with information and resources regarding child abuse and neglect.
  • Passed 106-2

HB 521: Transitional License/Teacher from Other State

  • Primary Sponsors: Clemmons, D-Guilford; Horn, R-Union; Riddell, R-Alamance; Gailliard, D-Nash
  • This bill would provide a three-year transitional license for out-of-state teachers, authorize LEAs to determine experience credit for those teachers, and modify the requirements for a lifetime license.
  • Passed 108-0

HB 563: 30 Minute Duty-Free Lunch for Teachers

  • Primary Sponsor: Torbett, R-Gaston
  • This bill would provide a minimum of thirty minutes of duty-free lunch time for teachers to the extent possible.
  • Passed 107-2

HB 653: School Transportation Personnel Salary Changes

  • Primary Sponsor: Torbett, R-Gaston
  • This bill would direct the State Board of Education to reclassify and establish positions related to school transportation and provide LEAs with additional information on the cost of salary revisions for transportation personnel.
  • Passed 108-0

 

Bill on NCSBA’s Agenda

House Bill 986: Restore LEA Sales Tax Benefit

  • Primary Sponsors: Lofton, D-Mecklenburg; Ross, R-Alamance; Meyer, D-Orange
  • This bill would restore the sales tax refund authorized for local school administrative units.

Click here to read our issue brief on Sales Tax Refund.

 

April 29 – May 3 Legislative Meeting Calendar

Tuesday, April 30

9:00 am – Senate: Rules and Operations – Legislative Building, rm 1027/1128 (audio)

1:00 pm – House: Education K-12 – Legislative Office Building, rm 643 (audio)

Wednesday, May 1

11:00 am – Senate: Education/Higher Education – Legislative Building, rm 1027/1128 (audio)

 

 

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 – April 26, 2019
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