Monday, February 18, 2013

No Holiday at the GA

It was quite a day at the old GA.  I’ll take things in order.
SB 1156, Senator George Barker’s bill to establish as a goal compensating teachers “at a rate that is competitive with the national average teacher salary in order to attract and keep highly qualified teachers” was tabled on a voice vote by the House Education Committee.

HB 1871, the VEA initiated anti-bullying bill sponsored by Delegate Jennifer McClellan, gained final passage in the Senate and is heading to the Governor’s desk.
This is the third VEA initiated bill to gain final passage!

Delegate Greason’s grade the school bill, HB 1999, also gained final passage despite our best efforts to stop it.  Senator Stanley’s companion bill, SB 1207, sailed through the House on a vote 56-43.  The vote was interesting – opposition and support were bipartisan.  Does anyone appreciate the irony of the Governor and General assembly slapping grades on schools?  How would you grade them?
The Senate delayed the final vote on Delegate Habeeb’s HB2096, the state takeover of underperforming schools bill.

In a major victory for the education community, Habeeb’s HJR693, the constitutional amendment to allow the state takeover of over 100 schools was recommitted to the Senate Privileges and Elections Committee, a committee not scheduled to meet again this session.  The recommitment, apparently, was a move to spare the Governor an embarrassing vote.
There is more to do on the state takeover issue – see tomorrow’s post for an update.