Report Card Bills – While the state policy makers have been discussing state report card reform for years, very little progress has been made. This year may mark a new push to finally overhaul the process. Both the House and Senate have new bills that approach the issue or report card reform in somewhat different ways. HB200 was introduced in March in the House Primary and Secondary Education Committee. SB145 was introduced in April in the Senate Primary and Secondary Education Committee.
HB200 was largely the result of efforts from the main education management groups. OAGC has some issues with the bill which are outlined here.
SB145 is based on the work of a work group that consisted of business, education and education policy groups. For a general outline of the bill, click here. OAGC was part of the work group that led to SB145 and is a proponent of SB145. There are some big differences between the two bills from how each component is calculated and graded to how assessments are used to whether or not there is an overall grade. A comparison document outlining all of the differences can be found at this link. For gifted advocates the main difference is that SB145 includes a graded gifted performance indicator that includes all of the current elements including identification and service whereas the HB200 has a partial indicator. Identification and service would be report-only. The other major difference is that HB200 moves the subgroup minimum size from 15 to 20, which OAGC opposes. Finally, SB245 will allow for the continued grading of the Prepared for Success measure whereas it would be report only in HB200.
It is likely that the interested parties on both bills will come together to reach some level of compromise between the two bills. Regardless of how that looks, it does appear that there is some movement to push through report card reform in 2021.
Budget News – Short story: there is nothing to report. Presumably, the House will introduce a substitute bill when they come back from spring break.