Bills are starting to pile up in the House and Senate Education Committees at this point in the session. Many bills never make it out of committee, but it can be interesting to see what has been filed.
House Education Committee (30 bills currently):
In addition to SF51 and SF52 setting allowable growth and the Governor’s proposed education reform bill, HSB4:
- HF4, a bill to establish a centralized school bus purchasing program.
- HF28, a bill to raise the compulsory attendance age to seventeen, except for students receiving competent private instruction.
- HF89, a bill to add a requirement that at least one foreign language be taught to children in grades one through six.
- HF113, a bill to allow nonpublic schools to be accredited by independent accreditation agencies rather than by the State Board of Education.
- HF141, a bill to extend the deadline for school district’s to certify budgets if allowable growth is set after March 15.
- HF142, a bill to establish an Education Remediation Council and to provide supplementary funding for students enrolled in AP courses who score a three or higher on the AP exam. The Council shall identify measures to define and standardize the skill sets that determine the need for remediation and shall develop strategies to strengthen grade nine through grade sixteen standards, competencies, and assessment systems, and the professional development of teachers. [Common Core comes for colleges and universities?]
- HF143, a bill to hold parents, guardians, and custodians criminally or civilly liable for failing to prevent harassment and bullying by students. [This seems like a bad idea for a number of reasons.]
- HF144, a bill to consider students enrolled in voluntary public preschool as being of compulsory school age.
- HF156, a bill to condition mandatory third grade retention upon a specific appropriation by the general assembly to fund all of the K-3 intensive reading remediation programs required by last year’s education reform bill.
Senate Education Committee (18 bills currently):
- SF2, a bill to establish a “parent trigger”.
- SF56, a bill to authorize school districts to adopt a mandatory uniform policy for the district or an individual school within the district. A mandatory uniform or dress code policy would not violate Iowa Code Section 280.22 (Student exercise of free speech) if the policy is viewpoint neutral, is reasonably related to legitimate pedagogical concerns, or protects students from sexually explicit, indecent, or lewd speech. [ACLU of Iowa is registered against the bill, and lobbyists for the Urban Education Network of Iowa are registered for the bill.]