Monday, March 12, 2018

First Day of Regional Meetings.  SEE launched its mid-session set of regional meetings today with a spirited discussion at the Grounds Restaurant in Cokato this morning.  I urge all SEE members to get out to these regional meetings to share their perspectives as the Legislature comes up on its committee deadlines over the next two weeks.  There are a lot of things to discuss and SEE staff needs member input to make certain the organization's mission is served as decisions are made.

Senate Education Finance Committee Meets.  School safety was the order of the day in the Senate Education Finance Committee.  The hearing was similar to the one held in the House Education Finance Committee last week at which the School Safety Center and the Department of Homeland Security testified.  After those presentations, attention turned to SF 2754, Senator Carla Nelson's bill to provide school districts with additional revenue to augment their current school safety operations and upgrades.  Unlike HF 3320, which expands the eligible uses of Long Term Facilities Maintenance Revenue to include improvements to school safety.  As I testified last week (and reiterated today), the problem with that approach is that a great number of school districts have already made commitments with their Long Term Facilities Maintenance Revenue leaving them with little in the way of new revenue to funnel toward safety improvements.  Further, the approach of HF 3320 only deals with buildings and not with increased personnel who may help promote school safety within buildings.  SF 2754 gives districts flexibility in determining what their most pressing safety needs are and using the increased revenue to at least partially meet those needs.

Bill Introductions


SF 3213--Carlson--Amends provisions relating to absence from school for religious observance.

SF 3229--P. Anderson--Authorizes school districts to use Long Term Facilities Maintenance Revenue for school safety improvements.

SF 3233--Clausen--Modifies coursework requirement for a Tier 3 teachers license.

SF 3234--Clausen--Makes technical changes related to teacher licensure.

SF 3235--Clausen--Extends timeline to implement tiered licensure.

SF 3239--B. Anderson--Modifies exemptions for compulsory attendance law.

SF 3243--Pratt--Authorizes school districts to use Long Term Facilities Maintenance Revenue for school safety improvements and creates supplemental aid program to pay a portion of the costs.

SF 3255--Eaton--Provides a grant for substance misuse prevention.

SF 3260--B. Anderson--Indexes referendum equalizing factors.

SF 3263--P. Anderson--Strengthens Increase Teacher of Color Act.


HF 3594--Koznick--Strengthens Increase Teacher of Color Act.

HF 3595--Wills--Authorizes school districts to use Long Term Facilities Maintenance Revenue for school safety improvements.

HF 3597--Daniels--Allows teachers to obtain a Tier 3 license without passing a basic skills test.

HF 3599--Wills--Increases Safe Schools Levy.

HF 3600--Loon--Directs Legislative Auditor to study differences in funding between school districts and charter schools.

HF 3658--Wagenius--Funds voluntary prekindergarten program.

HF 3665--Lohmer--Requires display of national motto in school buildings.

HF 3668--Mariani--Extends timeline to implement tiered licensure.

HF 3675--Wagenius--Provides grants to school districts for solar energy systems.

HF 3676--Jessup--Creates reimbursement grants for school safety audits.

HF 3692--Jessup--Requires screening for dyslexia.

HF 3697--A. Carlson--Requires school board policy on student deaths.

HF 3718--Bly--Appropriates money for students in alternative programs.

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