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GOVERNMENT RELATIONS


Alliance Legislative Report 97-16

Distributed via Email: May 13, 2011

HOUSE PASSES EDUCATION BUDGET FOR FY 2012

As was reported last week, the Senate had drafted an education budget for Fiscal Year 2012, this week it was the House of Representatives’ turn. The House, on a bi-partisan basis, approved a bill that provides K-12 education spending for FY ’12. The bill, HB 327 (Madigan, D-Chicago), was approved in committee Tuesday and was passed by the full House of Representatives Thursday afternoon.

Elementary and secondary education would take an overall cut compared to FY 2011, with $152 million pared from General State Aid (GSA). The plan would be to maintain the current foundation level, $6,119 per pupil, with the idea that a supplemental appropriation would be necessary next spring or the final GSA for FY 2012 would have to be prorated. Some budget line items under the House plan would be funded at the Governor’s recommended levels, others would be increased above the Governor’s recommendations, still others would be cut anywhere from 5% to 50%. Some provisions of the budget include:

  • $152 million cut to General State Aid with a plan to keep the foundation level flat ($6,119) with a possible proration
  • Fully funds mandated categorical grants – including regular transportation
  • Eliminates funding for teacher/administrator mentoring, principal mentoring, standards and assessments, advanced placement, growth model assessments, and Response to Intervention
  • Restores funding for Regional Offices of Education salaries

With the Governor, the Senate, and the House now each with its own budget plan, serious negotiations will begin on crafting a budget agreement.

EDUCATION REFORM BILL ON WAY TO GOVERNOR

The House of Representatives Thursday approved the education reform legislation on a 102-12 vote; the Senate passed the bill last month unanimously. SB 7 (Lightford, D-Maywood) contains education reform provisions regarding teacher tenure, teacher dismissal, teacher seniority, teacher strikes, and mandatory school board member training. A comprehensive summary of the bill can be found here. The bill will be sent to the Governor.

Since the passage of the bill in the Senate, a rift has occurred among some of the participants of the heavily negotiated bill. Though all stakeholders supported the legislation in the Senate, upon discussions in the House the Chicago Teachers’ Union and the Illinois Federation of Teachers opposed the bill. The discrepancy reportedly centers around a couple of provisions regarding collective bargaining practices and teacher strike processes for Chicago Public Schools that were added to the final legislative draft without being vetted by all negotiators, according to the teachers’ unions in Chicago. Follow up legislation may be forthcoming to address these issues and possibly some other technical miscues in the bill.

“HOT” BILL ACTION THIS WEEK

HB 1197 (Davis, M., D-Chicago) requires all schools to adopt a policy that prohibits a student athlete from returning to play without a physician’s authorization if the student athlete has suffered an injury and the coach suspects that the student might have a concussion. The bill was approved by the Senate Education Committee with the condition that it be amended to address Alliance concerns and become identical to HB 200 and SB 150 which already address this issue.

HB 1670 (Burke, K., D-Oak Lawn) requires elected officials (including school board members) to successfully complete the training program provided by the Public Access Counselor regarding the Open Meetings Act. The bill was approved by the Senate Executive Committee and will be further amended to address Alliance concerns.

HB 2086 (Davis, M.) provides that a student cannot be denied participation in an alternative learning opportunities program based solely on the fact that he or she has been suspended or expelled from school. The bill was amended to address Alliance concerns about student safety and was sent to the Senate floor.

HB 3171 (Cavaletto, R-Salem) adds the position of Assistant Principal in the School Code to assist the principal in the performance of various duties and responsibilities. The bill was approved by the Senate and will be sent to the Governor.

HB 3222 (Stephens, R-Highland) provides that a chief school business official endorsement shall be affixed to the administrative certificate of any holder who qualifies by having a Master's Degree in Public Administration from a regionally accredited higher education institution. The bill was approved by the Senate and will be sent to the Governor.

HB 3539 (Morrison, R-Palatine) eliminates the “hold harmless” provision of the state aid formula. The bill was approved by the Senate Education Committee and sent to the Senate floor.

SB 79 (Steans, D-Chicago) establishes a State Charter School Commission as an independent state agency with statewide chartering jurisdiction and authority. The bill was approved by the House Executive Committee and was sent to the House floor.

SB 1799 (Steans) will be amended to add the ISBE comprehensive re-write of Article 21 in the School Code regarding teacher certification. The bill was approved by the House Elementary and Secondary Education Committee and was sent to the House floor where it will wait for further amendments.

SB 2149 (Sullivan, D-Rushville) creates the Financial Oversight Panel (FOP) Law of the School Code to allow a school district to petition the ISBE for the establishment of an FOP. For a comprehensive analysis of the bill, click here. The bill was approved by the House Elementary and Secondary Education Committee and was sent to the House floor.

SB 2170 (Clayborne, D-E. St. Louis) , as amended, makes changes to the School Facility Occupation Tax Law which allows counties to impose a sales tax with receipts earmarked for school construction. It requires the imposition of the sales tax if the voters approve the referendum (instead of allowing the county board to choose to impose the sales tax) and requires the tax rate to be set forth in the question (instead of allowing the county board to choose to impose the tax at a different rate). The amendment was approved by the Senate Revenue Committee and the amended bill is pending on the Senate floor.

OTHER BILL ACTION THIS WEEK

HB 12 (Cole, R-Lake Villa) allows school energy efficiency grants to be made available to special education cooperatives. The bill was approved by the Senate and will be sent to the Governor.

HB 78 (Jakobsson, D-Urbana) provides that if a school board designates the area within 1,000 feet of a school to be a safe school zone, then the principal of that school and the local law enforcement agency may prohibit people from entering the safe school zone without a legitimate purpose. The bill was approved by the Senate Education Committee and sent to the Senate floor.

HB 139 (Ford, D-Chicago) adds a provision to the remediation section of the State Goals and Assessments article that when a remediation program is developed for a student the program may include an emphasis on reading and math if the student has performed below grade level for 2 consecutive school years. The bill was approved by the Senate and will be sent to the Governor.

HB 147 (Dugan, D-Kankakee) allows a school district to require a school bus driver to undergo testing to check for alcohol or drugs if the district has reasonable suspicion to believe that a school bus driver permit holder is under the influence of such. The bill was approved by the Senate Transportation Committee and was sent to the Senate floor.

HB 189 (Eddy, R-Hutsonville) provides that, with respect to any state statute or administrative rule that defines a general education classroom to be composed of a certain percentage of students with individualized education programs (IEPs), students with IEPs shall exclude students receiving only speech services outside of the general education classroom. The bill was approved by the Senate and will be sent to the Governor.

HB 190 (Eddy) p rovides that of the 70 charter schools that are permitted to operate at any one time in Chicago, not more than 5 charter schools devoted exclusively to students from low-performing or overcrowded schools are allowed. The bill was approved by the Senate Education Committee and sent to the Senate floor.

HB 287 (Flowers, D-Chicago) provides that a school board may create a committee on the retention of students, consisting of the district superintendent, a district administrator who directs student instruction and curriculum, a principal, and a teacher. The bill was held in the Senate Education Committee.

HB 1130 (Sente, D-Lincolnshire) creates the Movable Soccer Goal Safety Act that requires entities that sponsor a soccer program (including school districts) to have a policy that outlines how the body will specifically address the safety issues associated with movable soccer goals. The bill was approved by the Senate and will be sent to the Governor.

HB 1204 (Howard, D-Chicago) r equires school districts to provide instruction in violence prevention and conflict resolution education for grades kindergarten through 12 (rather than grades 4 through 12). The bill was approved by the Senate Education Committee with the condition that it be amended to address Alliance concerns and remove the curricular mandate.

HB 1240 (Franks, D-Woodstock) provides that upon request of a school district, any information obtained by a school district pursuant to provisions concerning criminal history records checks and checks of the Statewide Sex Offender Database and Statewide Child Murderer and Violent Offender Against Youth Database within the last 5 years must be made available to that school or school district. The bill was approved by the Senate Education Committee and sent to the Senate floor.

HB 1466 (McAsey, D-Lockport) , was amended to relieve the State Auditor General from the responsibility of auditing education service regions and Regional Offices of Education. The amendment was approved by the Senate Education Committee and was sent to the Senate floor.

HB 1600 (Ford) creates the Artificial Trans Fat Restriction Act to provide that no food containing artificial trans fat may be served by a food facility or used in the preparation of food within a food facility, however, the definition of “food facility” no longer includes entities operated by a school district. It does prohibit food containing artificial trans fat to be made available in a vending machine operated by a public school district. The bill was approved by the Senate Public Health Committee and was sent to the Senate floor.

HB 1706 (Gabel, D-Evanston) , regarding personnel reimbursement for children in hospital or home instruction, provides that a child qualifies for home or hospital instruction if it is anticipated that, due to a medical condition, the child will be unable to attend school and instead must be instructed at home or in the hospital for a period of 2 or more consecutive weeks or on an ongoing intermittent basis. The bill was approved by the Senate and will be sent to the Governor.

HB 1831 (Hernandez, D-Cicero) removes a provision that requires the educational services block grant to include the Bilingual Program. The bill was approved by the Senate Education Committee and sent to the Senate floor.

HB 2397 (Cross, R-Oswego) , as amended, provides that school districts will promote 60 minutes of reading per day for certain students in grades K-3. The amendment was approved by the Senate Education Committee and was sent to the Senate floor.

HB 3022 (Chap LaVia, D-Aurora) contains the ISBE’s recommended technical changes to the School Code and to delete obsolete provisions. The bill was approved by the Senate Education Committee and sent to the Senate floor.

HB 3035 (Holbrook, D-Belleville) makes changes regarding transfer students who have parents serving in the military. The bill was approved by the Senate and will be sent to the Governor.

HB 3115 (Gordon, D-Peoria) subject to appropriation, authorizes the ISBE to provide annual funding to public school districts and state-recognized, non-public schools serving students in grades kindergarten through 12 for the purchase of secular textbooks. The bill was approved by the Senate and was sent back to the House for concurrence in the Senate amendment.

HB 3179 (Cavaletto) defines habitual truant as a student that misses 5% (instead of 10%) of the previous 180 regular attendance days. The bill was approved by the Senate and will be sent to the Governor.

HB 3294 (Nybo, R-Lombard) allows schools to have access to life-saving emergency epinephrine auto-injectors if and when a student has an anaphylaxis reaction and to allow the school to have personnel trained to administer an emergency epinephrine auto-injector. The bill was approved by the Senate Public Health Committee and was sent to the Senate floor.

HB 3440 (Chapa LaVia) defines “service animal” in the School Code. The bill was amended to address Alliance concerns. The amendment changes provisions that require school districts to allow service dogs in schools to a provision that requires school districts to make reasonable accommodations for students.

HB 3464 (Pihos, R-Glen Ellyn) changes the date of the teacher supply and demand report to January 1, 2012 (instead of 2011) and changes the date of when superintendent and teachers salaries must be reported to the ISBE. The bill was approved by the Senate and will be sent to the Governor.

HB 3489 (Cavaletto) allows a school board to adopt a substitute authorization program for substitute teachers who do not hold a certificate valid for teaching in the common schools as shown on the face of the certificate. The bill was approved by the Senate and will be sent to the Governor.

SB 621 (Holmes, D-Aurora) provides that four or more contiguous school districts with all or portion of their territory located within the geographic boundaries of the same municipality may, when in their judgment the interest of the districts and of the students therein will be best served, jointly operate, through an institution of higher education located in the municipality, a science and mathematics partnership school for serving some or all of grades kindergarten through 8. The bill was approved by the House Elementary and Secondary Education Committee and was sent to the House floor.

This legislative report is written and edited by the lobbyists of the Illinois Association of School Boards to provide information to the members of the organizations that comprise the Illinois Statewide School Management Alliance.

Bill Text/Status: Illinois General Assembly www.ilga.gov


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