Legislative Update 4/23

HF 454 as amended passed the House today on a vote of 96-0.  This is the education department bill in which the Senate only made one change: to strike financial literacy from the subject tests required to earn a high school equivalency diploma.  The House concurred with the Senate amendment (H-1282) by voice vote.

Among other things, HF 454 amends Iowa Code Section 299A.4(6) to require a school district or area education agency to administer the annual achievement evaluation to a child under competent private instruction (home school) at no cost to the parent.  Previously, parents were required to reimburse the costs of conducting the evaluation unless the child was registered in a public school for dual enrollment purposes.  HF 454 also amends Iowa Code Section 299A.8 on Dual Enrollment to state that dual enrollment of a child solely for purposes of accessing the annual achievement evaluation shall not constitute a dual enrollment purpose.  Presumably the costs of providing the annual achievement evaluation are less than the one-tenth of one pupil funding received for each dual enrolled student but the cost to a school district or AEA isn’t zero.

HF 604 on education appropriations for FY 14 and FY 15 is headed to conference committee after the House refused to concur with the Senate amendment (H-1320) on a vote of 47-51 today.  The Senate insisted on the amendment by voice vote and appointed the following members to conference committee:

  • Schoenjahn (D-Fayette)
  • Horn (D-Linn)
  • Quirmbach (D-Story)
  • Smith (R-Scott)
  • Chelgren (R-Wapello)

The House also appointed members to the conference committee:

  • Dolecheck (R-Ringgold)
  • Jorgensen (R-Woodbury)
  • R. Taylor (R-Dallas)
  • Hanson (D-Jefferson)
  • Winckler (D-Scott)