K-12 Education Legislative Update - Friday, April 20, 2018

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K12 Education Legislation Update

Vision Statement:  Every public school student, through access to needed resources and rigor, will graduate ready for post-secondary education and work, prepared to be a globally engaged and productive citizen.

Mission Statement: The State Board of Education will use its constitutional authority to lead and uphold the system of public education in North Carolina that guarantees every student in this state an opportunity to receive a sound basic education.

April 20, 2018       

The Week In Review and Looking Forward into Next Week


The Committee on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities met on Monday, April 16, during which a draft report was approved by Committee Members.  The Select Committee on School Safety subcommittee on Student Physical Safety and Security Working Group met on Tuesday, April 17. They discussed measures that can be taken to ensure continued and further focus on physical safety of our students. 


In the coming week, the Student Health Working Group of the Select Committee on School Safety will meet for the second time on Monday, April 23. The Joint Legislative Task Force on Education Finance Reform (2017) will meet on Tuesday, April 25 for continued discussions around improving education finance. 


Briefing on Short Session and Eligible Bills for Consideration


The North Carolina General Assembly runs on a biennium schedule, meeting over the course of two years. In odd numbered years the General Assembly meets for a long session, but during even numbered years, the General Assembly meets for a short session. While both the long and short sessions have no set end dates, the short session is usually considerably shorter than the long session. 


This year, the General Assembly will convene for the short session on Wednesday, May 16th at 12:00 p.m.. Only certain bills my be considered during this period, and entirely new bills cannot be introduced. Some of the types of bills eligible for consideration include budget bills; study committee bills (bills recommended by committees of the General Assembly); appointment bills; gubernatorial actions (bills of action on gubernatorial nominations or appointments); bills authorized by a joint resolution of more than two-thirds vote; and pension or retirement bills. In addition to those types of bills, the General Assembly may consider crossover bills, which are bills that passed either the House or the Senate during the preceding long session. A full list of eligible types of bills, as well as a non-exhaustive list of crossover bills can be found here


While new bills cannot be introduced, it is possible to revive a crossover bill and drastically amend it by adding sections that may not be relevant to the initial intent of the bill. In addition, any bill that made crossover can also be used for entirely new legislation that in no way relates to the original bill.  To follow any eligible bills throughout the short session, click here for a list with links beginning on page 9. 

Kym + TOTY

House Select Committee on School Safety 


The House Select Committee on School Safety - Student Physical Safety and Security Working Group met on Tuesday, April 17. They heard a variety of presentations from Joe Haas, Executive Director, North Carolina Christian Schools Association; Chip Hughes, Chairman (Former), Governor's Task Force on Safer Schools; Mike Anderson, Community Development and Training Manager, North Carolina Center for Safer Schools, Department of Public Instruction; Sheriff Samuel S. Page, Rockingham County; and Sheriff Asa B. Buck, III, Carteret County. 


Sheriff Page's presentation on Volunteer School Resource Officers (SROs) can be found here. This program allows for Sheriffs to institute a program that allows individuals with prior experience as law enforcement officers or military police officers with an honorable discharge, to serve as volunteer school resource officers. These volunteer officers will report to the Sheriff and will undergo training that is currently being developed by the North Carolina Justice Academy.  


Mike Anderson’s presentation highlighted the importance of the critical incident response for school faculty and staff, stressing the importance of SROs and SRO training.  Anderson advocated to establish an accountability system for safety drills and to include charter schools in drill legislation.


At the meeting, Members recognized Kym Martin, Executive Director for the Center for Safer Schools with the NC Department of Public Instruction, for being available to the Committee for all meetings and inquiries.  In addition, Rep. Frank Iler, Member from Brunswick County, thanked the Brunswick County Teacher of the Year Carolynn Phillips, for her voice around school safety. 


Photo: Carolynn Phillips (left) and Kym Martin (right)


Committee on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

The Committee on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities convened its final meeting on Monday, April 13, during which the committee approved a draft report on their findings. The committee highlighted the work of the University of North Carolina System for their leadership in developing post-secondary educational opportunities for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The report addresses opportunities for education and employment for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities.  

2018 Teacher of the Year Announced

TOY 2018 - Freebird


Mr. Freebird McKinney, a social studies teacher at Walter M. Williams High School in Burlington, was named the 2018 Burroughs Wellcome Fund North Carolina Teacher of the Year. Here is the announcement from the Department of Public Instruction. A news article from the Alamance-Burlington School District webpage proudly announced Mr. McKinney's notable achievement. He will follow Lisa Godwin, a kindergarten teacher at Dixon Elementary School in Onslow County. Freebird will hold a one year position on the State Board of Education and will spend the next year traveling throughout North Carolina as a voice advocating for the teaching profession. Along with being named North Carolina’s Teacher of the Year, Mr. McKinney will also receive the bulleted items below: 

  • $2,000 for McKinney;
  • $1,000 for Walter Williams High School;
  • Funding for McKinney to attend the national conference of his choice;
  • A trip to China during summer 2018 with the 2017 Global Teachers Program under Go Global NC;
  • The offer of a one-year car lease on a 2017 Chevy Cruz or $1,000 check through Dick Shirley Automotive;
  • A weekend car rental from Cox Toyota;
  • Various gift cards for dry cleaning, a makeover, purchase of work clothing, etc.;
  • A membership to Alamance Citizens for Education’s Classroom Closet and a stocked supply cart; and
  • A scholarship to Sylvan Learning Center to be redeemed by McKinney’s family or to be designated for a student.

On behalf of the State Board of Education and the 1.5M students of North Carolina Public Schools, we would like to thank Lisa Godwin for her outstanding work representing the students and teachers of our great state.  Lisa will be greatly missed in her current role but will be a huge blessing to her rising kindergarteners in Onslow County next school year.

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    See this link for a complete list of bills impacting K-12 education.

    Legislative Calendar

    Monday, April 23, 2018

      9:00 a.m.: Select Committee on School Safety (House)                                                    643 LOB Audio


    Wednesday, April 25, 2018

    10:00 a.m.: Joint Legislative Task Force on Education Finance Reform (2017)                  643 LOB Audio

    North Carolina General Assembly 



      • Cecilia Holden  –  Director of Legislative Affairs and Special Initiatives  |  919-807-3406
      • Anne Murtha  –  Legislative Specialist  |  919-807-3403
      • David Smith –  Legislative Intern  |  919-807-3407

      To view previous 2018 Weekly Legislative Updates click here.

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