Bills on the Move: Week 5

Utah State Capitol Building

Bills on the Move

House Bills and Resolutions

*HB53S1 Utah Education Network Amendments — Rep. Ronda Rudd Menlove (R-Garland)

  • WHAT: This bill creates the Utah Education Network Board, which is the governing board for UEN; specifies the membership of the Utah Education Network Board; specifies the power and duties of the Utah Education Network Board which include: hiring an executive director for UEN; establishing policy for the operation of UEN and the administration of UEN’s duties; and advising UEN in the development of a telecommunications system to deliver educational services and the acquisition and distribution of instructional content; and makes technical amendments. This bill provides an immediate effective date. The Utah State Board of Education supports this bill.
  • WHERE: Governor Gary Herbert signed HB53S1 on Thursday, Feb. 23. It passed with nearly unanimous support, with just one “No” vote cast in its first committee hearing in the House.

*HB62 Provisions Regarding School Supplies — Rep. Kraig Powell (R-Heber City) 

  • WHAT: This bill allows an elementary school or elementary school teacher to provide to a student’s parent or guardian a suggested list of supplies for use during the regular school day; and requires that a suggested list of supplies include specified language explaining that the supplies may be brought from home on a voluntary basis; otherwise, they will be furnished by the school.
  • WHERE: HB62 is heading for the Governor’s desk after the House concurred Tuesday, Feb. 21, with an amendment made in the Senate last week. It passed the Legislature with nearly unanimous support, with just one “No” vote in its first committee hearing in the House.

HB91S1 Utah Enabling Act Litigation — Rep. Ken Sumsion (R-American Fork)

  • WHAT: This bill defines terms; requires local school boards and charter schools to seek competitive bids on the health insurance benefits it offers school district employees beginning in the 2012-13 school year and every five years thereafter; and establishes criteria for the competitive bids for health care benefits.
  • WHERE: HB91S1 is on the House Reading Calendar waiting to be considered by the full body on the House floor. The House Natural Resources, Agriculture and Environment Committee passed the bill on Tuesday, Feb. 21, 10-1.

HB123S1 Education Savings Accounts — Rep. John Dougall (R-American Fork)

  • WHAT: HB123S1 is the first substitute version of HB123. It creates a pilot program for 500 Utah high school students to test education savings accounts, where a set amount of funding is given to students to pay for their high school courses. The original bill would have moved all of Utah’s high schools to this so-called “backpack funding” model. Specifically, that bill restricts certain funding programs within the Minimum School Program to students in kindergarten through grade 8; creates an education savings account for a student enrolled in grades 9 through 12; directs the Legislature to annually establish, and provide an appropriation for, a per pupil allocation to be deposited in an education savings account; requires the withholding of a portion of money a school district is otherwise eligible to receive under Title 53A, Chapter 17a, Minimum School Program Act, for the school district’s local contribution towards high school students’ education savings accounts; provides that money in an education savings account may be used for: course fees for courses provided by a school district or charter school; course fees for online courses offered through the Statewide Online Education Program; course fees for courses provided by an institution within the state system of higher education or certain private, nonprofit higher education institutions in Utah; course fees for courses provided by certain entities under contract with the State Board of Education or State Board of Regents; and other fees required as a condition of student participation in an activity, class, or program; imposes a limitation on course fees; and makes technical amendments. This bill takes effect on July 1, 2012.
  • WHERE: HB123S1 is on its way to a House floor debate after the House Education Committee passed it out on an 8-6 vote.

HB135S1 Focus on Front-line Teachers Program — Rep. Jim Nielson (R-Bountiful)

  • WHAT: This bill defines terms; and creates the Focus on Front-Line Teachers Program, which provides for the distribution of additional WPUs to a qualifying district or charter school, depending on how relatively high the district or charter school is in comparison to the state average in its allocation of resources for front-line teachers. This bill appropriates to the Basic School Program, as an ongoing appropriation from the Education Fund, $5,000,000. This bill provides an effective date. This bill coordinates with S.B. 2, Public Education Budget Amendments.
  • WHERE: HB135S1 failed 9-2 to pass out of the House Education Committee on Wednesday, Feb. 22.

HB147 Online Education Amendments — Rep. Bradley Last (R-Hurricaine)

  • WHAT: This bill specifies the purpose of the Electronic High School; provides that the Electronic High School may only offer courses required for high school graduation or that fulfill core curriculum course requirements; requires a school district or charter school to offer online courses at the grades 9 through 12 level and online concurrent enrollment courses to students enrolled in the school district or charter school in grades 11 and 12; allows a school district or charter school to develop and teach online courses, and to ensure a wide selection of high quality online courses are offered; requires a school district or charter school to contract with an entity for online course content or online course instruction; allows a school district or charter school to form a consortium with other school districts or charter schools for the purpose of contracting with an entity for online course content or online course instruction; allows a student the option to enroll in online courses for a certain number of course credits each year; provides that online course credit hours are included in daily membership, except a student may not count as more than one FTE, unless the student intends to complete high school graduation requirements and exit high school early; provides that a student enrolled in an online course may not take more than a full course load unless: the student intends to complete high school graduation requirements and exit high school early; or if allowed by local school board or charter school governing board policy; provides for the administration of statewide assessments to students enrolled in online courses; repeals provisions relating to the Statewide Online Education Program; and makes technical amendments. This bill takes effect on July 1, 2012.
  • WHERE: HB147 is on its way to the House floor after it passed the House Education Committee on a 9-2 vote today (Friday, Feb. 24).

*HB148 Transfer of Public Lands Act and Related Study — Rep. Ken Ivory (R-West Jordan)

  • WHAT: This bill addresses issues related to public lands, including the transfer of title to public lands to the state and requiring the Constitutional Defense Council to study or draft proposed legislation on certain issues related to public lands. The Utah State Board of Education supports the concept of this bill.
  • WHERE: HB148 is on the House Reading Calendar, waiting to be considered by the full body on the House floor. It passed out of the House Natural Resources, Agriculture and Environment Committee on a 10-1 vote on Tuesday, Feb. 21.

HB149 Online Education Survey — Rep. Steve Eliason (R-Sandy)

  • WHAT: This bill provides for the establishment of a pilot online school survey system in which students, parents, and teachers evaluate schools. This bill provides an effective date.
  • WHERE: HB149 is on the House Reading Calendar, waiting to be considered by the full body on the House floor. It passed out of the House Education Committee on Wednesday, Feb. 22, with unanimous support.

HB197 Grants for Math Teacher Training — Rep. Rebecca Edwards (R-North Salt Lake)

  • WHAT: This bill appropriates money to the State Board of Education to award grants to institutions of higher education or nonprofit education organizations for math teacher training programs; specifies the qualifications of individuals eligible to receive the training; and requires the State Board of Education to make rules establishing criteria for awarding grants for math teacher training programs. This bill appropriates to the State Board of Education, as an ongoing appropriation from the Education Fund, $500,000. This bill provides an effective date.
  • WHERE: HB197 is heading to the Senate for consideration after passing the House on Thursday, Feb. 23, 54-17. It passed out of the House Education Committee Feb. 13 11-1.

HB213 School Community Council Member Qualifications — Rep. Lee Perry (R-Perry)

  • WHAT: This bill modifies the qualifications for a parent or guardian member of a school community council; requires the membership of a school community council to include two or more parent or guardian members than the number of school employee members; and makes technical amendments.
  • WHERE: The Senate Education Committee voted unanimously to hold HB213 on Wednesday. Feb. 22.

HB279 Utah Schools Seismic Hazard Inventory — Rep. Larry Wiley (D-West Valley City)

  • WHAT: This bill enacts the School Seismic Safety Act, which requires a school district or charter school to conduct a seismic evaluation of each facility used by the school district or charter school using specified standards; creates and specifies the duties of the Public School Seismic Safety Committee; directs the State Board of Education to adopt rules; and provides certain immunity from suit relating to a seismic safety evaluation; repeals the School Seismic Safety Act on July 1, 2022; and makes technical changes. This bill appropriates for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2012 and ending June 30, 2013 to State Board of Education – School Seismic Safety as a one-time appropriation from the General Fund, $500,000. This bill takes effect on July 1, 2012.
  • WHERE: HB279 failed 6-5 to pass out of the House Political Subdivisions Committee today (Friday, Feb. 24). The committee previously voted 8-3 to hold the bill 8-3.

HB289 Reauthorization of Corrections Education Programs — Rep. Christine Watkins (D-Price)

  • WHAT: This bill modifies the repeal date of Section 53A-1-403.5, which provides for certain educational programs for persons in custody of the Utah Department of Corrections, contracting for those services, a recidivism reduction plan, and which requires collaboration among certain state agencies in relation to the programs; and changes the repeal date of that section from July 1, 2012 to July 1, 2022.
  • WHERE: HB289 is on its way to the Governor after the House unanimously concurred with a Senate amendment on Tuesday, Feb. 21. The bill received unanimous support throughout the legislative process.

HB299S1 Tax Revisions — Rep. John Dougall (R-American Fork)

  • WHAT: This bill allows a claimant to claim a nonrefundable tax credit for tuition and mandatory fees for the claimant’s enrollment in an institution within the state system of higher education; limits the nonrefundable tax credit to 5% of the claimant’s tax liability before tax credits; and allows the claimant to carry forward the nonrefundable tax credit if the amount of the tax credit exceeds 5 percent of the claimant’s tax liability before tax credits. This bill has retrospective operation for a taxable year beginning on or after January 1, 2012.
  • WHERE: HB299S1 is on it’s way to the House for consideration by the full body. The bill is the substitute version of HB299, which the Senate Revenue and Taxation Committee adopted and passed today (Friday, Feb. 24) with a 9-4 vote.

HB311 Electronic Meetings for Charter School — Rep. Bradley Daw (R-Orem)

  • WHAT: This bill defines terms; authorizes a charter school board to conduct and convene an electronic meeting in writing on a website; requires notice to be given regarding when a vote will be taken; prohibits a charter school board member from communicating with another person while a vote is taken during an electronic meeting; exempts a charter school board from recording requirements; establishes requirements for a website on which an electronic meeting of a charter school board takes place; establishes a criminal penalty; and makes technical changes.
  • WHERE: HB311 is heading for a hearing in the Senate Education Committee after it passed the House on Tuesday, Feb. 21, 57-11. It passed the House Public Utilities and Technology Committee on Feb. 8 with unanimous support.

HB336 Electronic High School Amendments — Rep. Stephen Sandstrom (R-Orem)

  • WHAT: This bill specifies the purpose of the Electronic High School provides that the Electronic High School may only offer courses required for high school graduation or that fulfill core curriculum course requirements; removes the Electronic High School as an online course provider in the Statewide Online Education Program; and makes technical amendments. This bill takes effect on July 1, 2012.
  • WHERE: HB336 is heading to the House for consideration by the full body after it passed out of the House Education Committee today (Friday, Feb. 24).

HB350S2 Payroll Deduction Amendments — Rep. Bradley Daw (R-Orem)

  • WHAT: This bill modifies a provision requiring an employer to deduct an employee’s wages for union dues if directed to do so by an employee; requires an employer to deduct also for membership dues in any professional or trade organization if an employee directs the employer to make the deduction; and makes technical changes.
  • WHERE: HB350S2 is on the House Reading Calendar, waiting to be considered by the full body on the House floor. The bill is the second substitute of HB350, adopted and passed by the House Business and Labor Committee on Wednesday, Feb. 22, 7-5.

HB363 Health Education Amendments — Rep. Bill Wright (R-Holden)

  • WHAT: This bill modifies requirements for health instruction, including human sexuality instruction.
  • WHERE: HB363 is heading to the Senate for further consideration after the House amended the bill twice and passed it 45-28 on Wednesday, Feb. 22. The bill passed the House Education Committee 8-7 on Feb. 9.

HB397 Charter School Start-up Amendments — Rep. Brad Dee (R-Ogden)

  • WHAT: This bill provides for grants to charter schools for expenses for planning and implementation of a charter school; allows the State Charter School Board to use a portion of the money appropriated for charter school start-up costs for financial monitoring of new charter schools and professional development or technical assistance for governing board members and staff of new charter schools; and directs the State Board of Education to make rules for the award and use of grants for charter school start-up costs. This bill appropriates: to the State Board of Education – State Charter School Board, as an ongoing appropriation for fiscal year 2012-13: from the Education Fund, $2,500,000. This bill provides an effective date.
  • WHERE: HB397 is on its way to the House floor after it passed the House Education Committee today (Friday, Feb. 24).

HB415 Protections of Athletes with Head Injuries Act — Rep. Paul Ray (R-Clearfield)

  • WHAT: This bill amends definitions; requires that each agent of an amateur sports organization be aware of the organization’s concussion and head injury policy; requires that an amateur sports organization or its agent immediately remove a child from participating in a sporting event if the organization or agent knows or should have known the child sustained a concussion or traumatic head injury; and makes technical changes.
  • WHERE: HB415 is on it’s way to the House floor after the House Health and Human Services Committee passed the bill with unanimous support today (Friday, Feb. 24).

HB420 Parent Education Initiative — Rep. Steve Eliason (R-Sandy)

  • WHAT: This bill requires school districts to offer an annual seminar to parents, with information on substance abuse, bullying, mental health, and Internet safety; requires the State Board of Education to: develop a curriculum and provide it to requesting school districts; and report on the program to the Education Interim Committee; and requires a school district to notify charter schools located within the school district’s boundaries of the parent seminar.
  • WHERE: HB420 is heading to the House floor for consideration by the full body after it passed the House Education Committee with two “No” votes today (Friday, Feb. 24).

HB430 Classified School Employee Amendments  — Rep. Bradley Daw (R-Orem)

  • WHAT: This bill provides that, for purposes of determining retirement benefits provided under the Utah State Retirement and Benefit Insurance Act, a regular full-time employee does not include a classified school employee: who is hired on or after July 1, 2012, and does not receive benefits normally provided by the participating employer; or who is hired before July 1, 2012, who does not receive benefits normally provided by the participating employer, and whose employment hours are increased on or after July 1, 2012; and makes technical changes.
  • WHERE: HB430 is on the House Reading Calendar, waiting to be considered by the full body on the House floor. The bill passed the House Retirement and Independent Entities Committee 4-3 on Thursday, Feb. 23.

HB437S1 Public Employee Health Care Benefits — Rep. Bradley Daw (R-Orem)

  • WHAT: This bill requires state employees to be enrolled in a high deductible health plan unless the employee chooses to enroll in a different health benefit plan during each open enrollment period; requires the Public Employee Health Plan to provide training on changing coverages to the high deductible plan with a health savings account, including coordination of benefits with other insurances; and makes technical changes.
  • WHERE: HB437S1 is on its way to the House floor for consideration after the House Retirement and Independent Entities Committee adopted this first substitute version of HB437 and passed it with unanimous support today (Friday, Feb. 24).

HB492 Protection of School Nurses — Rep. Paul Ray (R-Clearfield)

  • WHAT: This bill modifies Title 26, Chapter 53, Protection of Athletes with Head Injuries Act, and Title 53A, Chapter 6, Educator Licensing and Professional Practices Act, by clarifying the requirements of a school nurse engaged in treating a student who sustains a concussion or traumatic head injury.
  • WHERE:  HB492 is on the House Reading Calendar, waiting to be considered by the full body on the House floor. The bill passed the House Health and Human Services Committee with unanimous support on Wednesday, Feb. 22.

HB500 Education Reporting Efficiency Amendments — Rep. Ryan Wilcox (R-Ogden)

  • WHAT: This bill directs the State Board of Education to determine how to modify or eliminate reporting requirements to reduce the time school district and charter school personnel spend in completing reports.
  • WHERE: HB500 is on its way to a House floor debate after the House Education Committee passed it unanimously and recommended that it be placed on the consent calendar. Doing so typically expedites the legislative process.

HB501 Youth Suicide Prevention — Rep. Eric Hutchings (R-Kearns)

  • WHAT: This bill requires the State Board of Education to develop sample materials to be used by a school district or charter school regarding student suicide prevention; and requires school districts and charter schools to provide in-service training on youth suicide prevention every five years.
  • WHERE: HB501 is on the House Reading Calendar, waiting to be considered by the full body on the House floor. The bill unanimously passed the House Education Committee on Wednesday, Feb. 22.

Senate Bills and Resolutions

*SB48 Mission of Public Education — Sen. Pat Jones (D-Salt Lake City)

  • WHAT: This bill adds a vision statement for the public education system; adds language to broaden and update the mission statement of public education; and makes technical changes. This bill has the support of the Utah State Board of Education.
  • WHERE: SB48 is on the House Reading Calendar, awaiting consideration by the full body on the House floor. On Wednesday, Feb. 22, the House Education Committee amended the bill before passing it with unanimous support. The Senate also amended the bill before passing it with unanimous support in both votes, Feb. 15 and Feb. 14. It also received unanimous support in the Senate Education Committee on Feb. 6. While it has already passed the Senate, if it passes the House it would have to go back to the Senate for the body to concur with the House amendment.

SB59S1 Income Tax Contribution for Elementary Schools — Sen. Ross Romero (D-Salt Lake City)

  • WHAT: This bill provides an individual income tax contribution for elementary schools; requires the State Board of Education to provide a list of elementary schools in the state to the State Tax Commission on an annual basis for purposes of the income tax contribution; provides that the school principal, in consultation with the school community council or governing board of a charter school, shall determine the purposes for which amounts an elementary school receives from the contribution shall be expended; provides that if the collections from the contribution and other education-related contributions do not meet a certain threshold amount, the State Tax Commission shall remove the designations for those contributions from the individual income tax return and may not collect the contributions; and makes technical and conforming changes. This bill provides effective dates. This bill provides for retrospective operation for a taxable year beginning on or after January 1, 2012.
  • WHERE: SB59S1 is circled on the Senate Third Reading Calendar, which means it is essentially on hold, waiting to be considered for final passage in the Senate. The bill passed its first Senate vote on Tuesday, Feb. 21, 21-5 after the body adopted this substitute version of SB59. The bill passed the Senate Revenue and Taxation Committee with unanimous support Feb. 14.

*SB64 Public Education Employment Reform — Sen. Aaron Osmond (R-South Jordan)

  • WHAT: This bill reorganizes provisions regarding the status and termination of school district employees; and educator evaluations; creates the Public Education Human Resource Management Act; directs the State Board of Education to make rules requiring the performance of school district employees to be evaluated annually, with exceptions; requires data on school district employee ratings to be publicly reported; prescribes procedures for the non-renewal or termination of a career employee’s contract for unsatisfactory performance; directs the State Board of Education to make rules requiring a school district’s employee compensation system to be aligned with the district’s annual evaluation system; requires the salary of certain school or district administrators to be contingent on an evaluation; and makes technical amendments. The Utah State Board of Education supports this bill.
  • WHERE: SB64 is circled on the Senate Second Reading Calendar, which is essentially a hold on the bill. In the Senate, bills typically require two votes to advance. SB64 passed the Senate Education Committee with unanimous support on Feb. 13.

SB67S1 Teacher Effectiveness and Outcomes Based Compensation — Sen. Stuart Adams (R-Layton)

  • WHAT: This bill requires that summative evaluations of teachers: differentiate among four levels of performance; and be based on student learning growth and the extent to which a teacher meets teacher effectiveness standards; requires reporting on the number and percentage of a school’s teachers in each of the four summative evaluation rating categories; requires a local school board to develop and implement salary schedules for teachers based on a teacher’s performance; provides that the assignment of personnel to a school is subject to the approval of the school principal; and makes technical amendments. The Utah State Board of Education has not considered this substitute bill, but took a position of “hold for further study” on the original SB67.
  • WHERE: SB67S1 is on the Senate Second Reading Calendar. The Senate Education Committee adopted this substitute version of SB67 and passed it out on a 4-3 today (Friday, Feb. 24).

SB81 Para-educator Funding — Sen. Karen Mayne (D-West Valley City)

  • WHAT: This bill provides funding for Title 1 school improvement schools to hire paraeducators to assist in teaching; and requires the State Board of Education to report on funding expenditures. This bill appropriates to the Related to Basic Program, as an ongoing appropriation from the Education Fund, $500,000.
  • WHERE: SB81 is waiting for final consideration in the Senate after it passed its first vote in the body 24-5 today (Friday, Feb. 24). The Senate Education Committee passed the bill out with unanimous support on Wednesday, Feb. 22.

SB82 Equal Access for Teacher Association Amendments — Sen. Mark Madsen (R-Lehi)

  • WHAT: This bill amends provisions related to education employee associations; and makes technical changes.
  • WHERE: SB82 is on the Senate Second Reading Calendar, waiting to be considered by the full body on the Senate floor. It typically takes two votes in the Senate for a bill to advance. The Senate Education Committee passed the bill out today (Friday, Feb. 24) on a 5-1 vote.

SB93S1 Retention Proceeds Revisions — Sen. Scott Jenkins (R-Plain City)

  • WHAT: This bill clarifies the meaning of public agency; modifies how retention money is held and accounted for; and limits the amount a local school board may retain until a school construction project is completed and accepted by the board to 5 percent of the contract price.
  • WHERE: SB93S1 is on its way to the Governor’s Office after the Senate unanimously voted to reconsider the House amendment it previously approved. The Senate concurred, again, with unanimous support on Tuesday, Feb. 21. The bill was amended and passed out of the House on a 65-1 vote on Feb. 16. The bill passed the House Education Committee Jan. 31 with a unanimous vote. The bill also received unanimous support in the Senate Education Committee on Jan. 24 and on the Senate floor on Jan. 26 and 27.

SB151S2 Students At Risk of Academic Failure Study — Sen. Howard Stephenson (R-Draper)

  • WHAT: This bill directs the Education Interim Committee in 2012 to study: programs and initiatives in the state and other states to assist students who score below proficient on assessments of academic achievement or are economically disadvantaged; and whether funding for the Carson Smith Scholarships for Students with Special Needs program is sufficient to meet the demand for scholarships. The Utah State Board of Education has not considered this substitute bill, but opposed the original version of SB151, titled Student Opportunity Scholarships.
  • WHERE: SB151S2 waiting to be assigned to a House Committee after the Senate approved it 17-7 on final passage today (Friday, Feb. 24).  The bill passed its first vote in the Senate 22-2 on Thursday, Feb. 23. The Senate Education Committee adopted this substitute version of SB151 and passed it with unanimous support on Feb. 17.

*SB152 Charter School Financing — Sen. John Valentine (R-Orem)

  • WHAT: This bill amends provisions regarding the financing of charter schools, establishes the Charter School Credit Enhancement Program, and establishes the Charter School Reserve Account. This bill appropriates to the State Board of Education – Charter School Reserve Account, as a one-time appropriation for fiscal year 2012-13; from the Education Fund, $3,000,000. This bill takes effect on July 1, 2012. The Utah State Board of Education considered this bill, but took no position on it.
  • WHERE: SB152 has been returned to the House Rules Committee, which is the body’s sorting committee. It passed the House Education Committee on Wednesday with a 10-1 vote. It has already cleared the Senate, receiving a 26-2 vote on final passage on Feb. 15 and unanimous support in its first vote on the Senate floor on Feb. 14. The bill passed the Senate Education Committee with unanimous support on Feb. 2.

SB153S1 Procurement Amendments — Sen. Wayne Niederhauser (R-Sandy)

  • WHAT: This bill recodifies and amends the Utah Procurement Code. This bill takes effect on January 1, 2013.
  • WHERE SB153S1 is circled on the Senate Second Reading Calendar, which essentially means it is on hold. The Senate Government Operations and Political Subdivisions Committee adopted this substitute version of SB153 and passed it out with unanimous support on Tuesday.

SB165S1 Redevelopment Agency Amendments — Sen. Todd Weiler (R-Woods Cross)

  • WHAT: This bill defines terms; amends language related to a notice of an impending boundary action required when an agency is created; amends language related to a public entity’s authority; amends tax increment and sales tax provisions; amends language related to the duties of a taxing entity committee; amends the definition of “local public procurement unit;” and makes technical corrections. This bill coordinates with S.B. 153, Procurement Amendments, by providing substantive and technical amendments.
  • WHERE: SB165S1 is on waiting to be assigned to a House Standing Committee for consideration after an amended version of the bill cleared the Senate on final passage with a unanimous vote today (Friday, Feb.24). The Senate adopted this substitute version of SB165 and gave preliminary approval on Thursday, Feb. 23, with a unanimous vote. The bill received unanimous support in the Senate Revenue and Taxation Committee on Feb. 7.

*SB175 School Grading Amendments — Sen. Wayne Niederhauser (R-Sandy)

  • WHAT: This bill requires the State Board of Education to study modifications to a school grading system model provided in statute; and make recommendations to the Education Interim Committee for a school grading system; and provides that the school grading system shall take effect for the 2012-13 school year. The Utah State Board of Education supports this bill.
  • WHERE: SB175 is waiting to be assigned to a House Standing Committee after it passed the Senate with two unanimous votes today (Friday, Feb. 24) and Thursday, Feb. 23. The bill passed the Senate Education Committee Feb. 17, also with unanimous support.

SB178 Statewide Online Education Program Amendments — Sen. Howard Stephenson (R-Draper)

  • WHAT: This bill requires the program name, “Statewide Online Education Program,” to be used in the dissemination of information on the program; provides that the State Board of Education, including an employee of the State Board of Education, may not give preference to an online course or online course provider; modifies the fees paid to an online course provider for an online course; provides for a bonus to an online course provider for a student attaining a certain score on an advanced placement test, International Baccalaureate test, or end-of-course achievement test administered pursuant to the Utah Performance Assessment System for Students (U-PASS); modifies the date when an online course provider receives payment for an online course; prescribes when a student may withdraw from an online course; prescribes procedures for the completion of a course credit acknowledgement; , , prohibits a student who enrolls in an online course from being counted in membership for a released-time class, if counting the student in membership  for a released-time class would result in the student being counted as more than one FTE; permits a student taking an online course to take more than a full course load if allowed under local school board or charter school governing board policy; modifies requirements for reports on the performance of an online course provider; provides for a declaration of intent to enroll in an online course and changes to a high school course schedule; provides for reporting of noncompliance, and enforcement of compliance, with requirements of the Statewide Online Education Program; and makes technical changes.
  • WHERE: SB178 is on the Senate Second Reading Calendar. It passed the Senate Education Committee on Wednesday, Feb. 22 on a 4-2 vote.

SB191 Accountability for School Attendance — Sen. Jerry Stevenson (R-Layton)

  • WHAT: This bill requires a school board, charter board, or school district to issue a habitual truant citation to a habitual truant if reasonable efforts have been taken to resolve the school attendance problem and the efforts have not been successful; and makes technical changes.
  • WHERE: SB191 is circled on the Senate Second Reading Calendar. It passed the Senate Education Committee with unanimous support on Feb. 13.

SB196 Software for Special Needs Children — Sen. Wayne Niederhauser (R-Sandy)

  • WHAT: This bill provides computer software programs and activity manuals to certain students with autism and other special needs.
  • WHERE: SB196 is on its way to the House Education Committee. It passed out of the Senate on a 24-3 vote on final passage after it was amended on Wednesday, Feb. 22. The body gave its preliminary approval in a 21-1 vote on Tuesday, Feb. 21. The bill passed the Senate Education Committee on Feb. 14.

SB223 Pledge of Allegiance Reinforcement Act — Sen. Aaron Osmond (R-South Jordan)

  • WHAT: This bill modifies requirements for reciting the pledge of allegiance in public schools.
  • WHERE: SB223 is on the Senate Second Reading Calendar, waiting to be considered by the full body on the Senate floor. The bill passed the Senate Education Committee with unanimous support on Wednesday, Feb. 22.

SB273 Surplus Property Amendments — Sen. Ben McAdams (D-Salt Lake City)

  • WHAT: This bill adds purposes for which surplus property may be used by an eligible entity that acquires it.
  • WHERE: SB273 is on its way to the House Government Operations Committee after passing out of the Senate on a single, unanimous vote on Wednesday, Feb. 22. It passed the Senate Revenue and Taxation Committee with unanimous support and was recommended to be placed on the Consent Calendar, which typically expedites the legislative process.

*SCR5 Concurrent Resolution Encouraging Parental Engagement in the Education of Children — Sen. Pat Jones (D-Salt Lake City)

  • WHAT: This concurrent resolution of the Legislature and the Governor recognizes and supports parental engagement in the education of their children and efforts to increase parent engagement.
  • WHERE: SCR5 is on its way to the Governor’s Office after it passed the House with unanimous support today (Friday, Feb. 24. It also received unanimous support in the House Education Committee on Feb. 22. Previously, it cleared the Senate with two unanimous votes on the Senate floor Feb. 15 and Feb. 14, and in the Senate Education Committee Feb. 6.

SJR22S1 Joint Resolution on State Spending Limitations — Sen. Stuart Reid (R-Ogden)

  • WHAT: This joint resolution of the Legislature proposes to amend the Utah Constitution to modify a provision of the Revenue and Taxation Article relating to state expenditures. The Utah State Board of Education has not taken a position on this resolution, but opposed the original SJR22.
  • WHERE: SJR22S1 is circled on the Senate Third Reading Calendar. The Senate gave the resolution preliminary approval on Thursday, Feb. 23, 16-13, after adopting this substitute version of SJR22. The Senate Revenue and Taxation Committee passed the resolution out with a 4-2 vote.

Find all the education bills we’re tracking this session and the positions the Utah State Board of Education has taken on them under the 2012 Education Bills tab on the menu at the top-right of the page.

* Utah State Board of Education Position

* Green = Support

* Light Green = Support the Concept

* Yellow = Hold for further Study

* Orange = Recommend for Interim Study

* Red = Oppose

* Purple = Unnecessary

* Light Blue = Watch

* Blue = No Position

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