This Week in Politics in 5 Sentences (or Fewer)

Bob Kefgen's picture

It was a hectic next-to-last week of session before summer break and there are dozens of bills in play as both chambers cut deals to try and get their priorities across the finish line going into the summer primaries and party conventions…so look forward to MASSP's post-session breakdown and in the meantime, strap in for a roller coaster overview. On Tuesday the Senate Education Committee reported out seven different bills on six different topics: extending the sunset on allowing students to substitute an additional arts or CTE credit for one credit of world language (SB 175), removing the cap on how many dual enrollment credits a student can take (SB 980), lowering the credits required to serve as a substitute teacher from 90 to 60 (HB 4069), eliminating a requirement that all teachers take a three-credit course in diagnosing and treating reading disabilities (HB 4084), expanding the allowable use of uncertified teachers (SB 909-910), and requiring schools to conduct a school safety assessment (SB 983). On Wednesday, the House Appropriations Committee concurred (with a few small tweaks) in the Senate's version of the Governor's Marshall Plan, setting the stage for that $100 million spending bill to pass concurrently with the conference report on the K-12 budget, that was adopted on Thursday and is now awaiting House and Senate action. The Career Pathways Alliance recommendations seem poised for completion before summer break with the full Senate moving their two bills (SB 684-685) over to the House during Thursday session then moving the four remaining House bills (HB 5139, 5141-42, and 5145) out of the Economic Development Committee. Topics that also saw action this week and may or may not make it over the finish line before summer: school safety bills (we're up to 34 total pieces of legislation between both chambers), eliminating the basic skills test for aspiring teachers, sexual assault legislation introduced in response to the Larry Nassar sexual abuse case, and more tax cuts that would take money out of the School Aid Fund.