Friday, February 27, 2015

Seat-Time Bill Passes, First Annual WUWT Award, Sine Die

Yesterday, the House adopted the conference report for Delegate Greason's HB1616.  The Senate followed suit today.  This bill has not attracted much attention, but it could fundamentally change the way schools operate, as it eliminates the 140 hour seat-time requirement to earn a credit for graduation.  This bill would allow a student to demonstrate knowledge of the content, gain the credit, and move on.  School divisions, based on Board guidelines, could develop tests to use to assess the demonstration of knowledge.  The Board of Education will develop the regulations, but the elimination of the seat-time requirement is sure to change the lives of all involved in secondary education.  Here is the meat of the bill:

9. Permit local school divisions to waive the requirement for students to receive 140 clock hours of instruction to earn a standard unit of credit upon providing the Board with satisfactory proof, based on Board guidelines, that the students for whom such requirements are waived have learned the content and skills included in the relevant Standards of Learning.

In every session there is a bill that makes you wonder, "What's up with that?"  This year, it's HB2331, which "defines the fisher as a fur bearing animal."  When my curiosity got the best of me, I started fishing for some facts about this animal, which, as of July 1, when the law goes into effect, will be fur bearing.  When I found out that the habitat of the fisher does not include Virginia, that the closest one to here is in Maine, I again asked myself, "What's up with that?"  Who will tell the fishers of their change in status if any can be found?  Not one person in the General Assembly voted against this important bill.  The whole thing seems fishy to me.  And, oh, by the way, no wonder we had 2,774 bills! 
The session adjourned Sine Die at 9:09 PM, but please check in periodically, as I will be posting from time to time as we approach the reconvened session (veto session).