Advocacy & Policy

Legislative Update – March 19, 2018

Much like March Madness, to advance on in the legislative process, a bill has to keep winning support. Unlike March Madness, a bill’s supporters don’t all have to wear the same jerseys. In the spirit of all things bracket, we thought we’d give an update on the bills we’ve mentioned so far this year.

As always, please reach out if you have any questions or visit our advocacy tool to write your legislators!

House Bill 1549/Senate Bill 1804 (Terry/Ketron) – Helping clear the way for high-quality teachers to come and stay in our classrooms, Tennesseans for Student Success supported this bill. We’re proud to say it passed both the House and Senate and is on its way to the Governor for his signature.

House Bill 67/Senate Bill 250 (Smith/Gresham) – This legislation requires school districts to use alternative growth models to demonstrate their students’ growth. We supported it, the House and Senate passed it, and it was signed into law by the Governor.

House Bill 1569/Senate Bill 1691 (Brooks, H/Lundberg) – We are strong proponents of Career and Technical Education (CTE) classes and of Tennessee’s students learning skills today that will help them tomorrow. This bill creates greater access to CTE courses in high school. We support HB 1569. It has passed the House and is working its way through the Senate process.

House Bill 1599/Senate Bill 1649 (Forgety/Norris) – This legislation incentivizes Tennessee’s businesses to participate in work-based learning partnerships with local school districts. We are proud to support HB 1599 as it works its way through both the House and Senate chambers.

House Bill 1870/Senate Bill 1901 (Dunn/Gresham) – Education isn’t one-size-fits-all, and this legislation provides that charter schools are given equitable access to resources intended to support the special education services they provide. We support HB 1870 as it works its way through both the House and Senate chambers.

House Bill 2203/Senate Bill 2589 (Byrd/Hensley) – This legislation removed annual assessments for many subjects and grades, preventing teachers, parents, and students from being able to utilize information from the assessment for student success. We’re happy to report this legislation has been taken off notice and will not be moving forward.

House Bill 1609/Senate Bill 2575 (Hill, M./Hensley) – Another politically-motivated and short-sided bill, this legislation would have ushered in a national assessment and throw out the statewide work to establish a Tennessee-specific assessment. This legislation failed in the Education Instruction and Programs Subcommittee and therefore will not advance.

House Bill 2030/Senate Bill 1975 (Forgety/Gardenhire) – We support this bill as it seeks to increase opportunities for more students to participate in dual credit or dual enrollment courses. It has passed the Senate Education Committee and is up for a vote next week in the Education Instruction and Programs Committee in the House.

House Bill 2525/Senate Bill 2399 (Beck/Kyle) – You’ve heard us say before that politics should stop at a school’s front door and we will always fight politically-motivated legislation that threatens Tennessee’s academic progress. This bill would block some public charter schools from receiving the information necessary to help inform parents of public choices available for their children. This bill is up in House and Senate committees.

House Resolution 192/Senate Resolution 158 (Hawk/Norris) – While these resolutions won’t travel concurrently like the bills listed above, they are both up for votes in various committees next week. We support these resolutions as they confirm changes in the state’s education funding formula, the BEP, and provide additional RTI2 funding for instructors.

House Bill 1694/Senate Bill 1629 (Smith/Gresham) – A bill to help make certain everyone involved in teacher training programs is accountable for student success, we support HB 1694 as it works through both chambers.

We’ll be back next week with a current look at what’s up for a vote. Thanks for being engaged in the legislation that affects Tennessee’s students! We’d award you a free win on your March Madness bracket if we could.

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