Dems: Education Committee Report – Week 10, 2019

March 20, 2019
By

FLOOR ACTION:

SF 160 – School safety plan technical bill

SF 246 – Eligibility for All Iowa Opportunity Scholarships

SF 245 – Eligibility and reporting for Skilled Workforce Shortage Tuition Grant

SF 438 – Omnibus education and requirement elimination bill

 

FLOOR ACTION:

SF 160 – School safety plan technical bill

SF 160 requires public and nonpublic schools to consider recommendations from the Department of Public Safety when developing high-quality emergency operations plans.
[3/18: 48-0 (Excused: Dawson; Vacant: Danielson)]

 

SF 246 – Eligibility for All Iowa Opportunity Scholarships

SF 246 strikes the age provisions to ensure all applicants are held to the same eligibility criteria under the All Iowa Opportunity Scholarship. Over the course of the past two years, two new student populations have been granted access to the All Iowa Opportunity Scholarship:  House File 642 granted eligible foster care students first priority for funding; and House File 2502 granted students whose parent was a public safety worker killed in the line of duty second priority for funding. The defining language for each of these student populations contains an age threshold that would cause them to lose eligibility prior to receiving the maximum benefit under the program. There is no such age threshold for the general student population.
[3/18: 48-0 (Excused: Dawson; Vacant: Danielson)]

 

SF 245 – Eligibility and reporting for Skilled Workforce Shortage Tuition Grant

SF 245 contains a technical correction to eliminate the Iowa Workforce Development reference in the Skilled Workforce Shortage Tuition Grant and ensures that students enrolled in programs of study aligned with statewide high-demand jobs continue to qualify for funding. In addition, the bill amends the program to grandfather in students receiving grants who are enrolled in a program of study that later on is removed from eligibility.
[3/20: 49-0 (Vacant: Danielson)]

 

SF 438 – Omnibus education and requirement elimination bill

SF 438 removes the requirement for schools to confirm and record that students have had blood lead, vision and dental screenings before entering school. It removes requirements for schools to provide certain resource information on health screenings to parents and to help coordinate testing services if needed. The bill strikes a provision requiring that every parent registering their child for school be provided with a student vision card from the Iowa Optometric Association. It also removes the requirement for schools to provide that information to the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH), effective July 2020. The bill keeps the school nurse and teacher librarian requirements for each school district, but eliminates the goal of having one school nurse for every 750 students.

Other provisions in the bill include:

  • Removing requirements that AEA boards give notice on the agency’s proposed budget by publication in a newspaper in each county in which a school district is located. Instead, notice can be posted on the AEA Internet site.
  • Allowing a school district to charge an employee for pre-employment and regular background checks.
  • Striking requirements that school districts, community colleges and public universities conduct an evaluation regarding implementation of an environmentally preferable cleaning policy and the use of less harmful cleaning products.
  • Providing an exception to the requirement for a school district to deposit funds from the condemnation, sale or other disposition of schoolhouses into the PPEL fund.

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