Weekly Legislative Update - Friday, June 15, 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.

June 15, 2018       

The Week In Review and Looking Forward into Next Week


The General Assembly is swiftly moving toward the end of the short session, and adjournment is rumored to be the end of June. Throughout this week, members of the House and Senate voted on a multitude of bills. 
One major bill addressed this week is HB 986 Various Changes to Education Laws. It includes a host of changes that relate to cursive writing reports, mental health, low performing schools and K-12 test requirements. This bill is summarized below, along with many others receiving attention this week.
New public bills can no longer be filed this session so legislators are aiming to reach final decisions with bills currently in circulation. With that being said, legislators may still consider some topics outside of bills currently filed, including Governor's appointments to the State Board of Education.

Budget Update

On Tuesday, June 11th, the House voted to override the Governor's veto and therefore, SB 99, the 2018-2019 expansion budget, is now Session Law 2018-5. An extensive breakdown of the various impacts of the expansion budget can be found in this former update. Procedural and technical adjustments to the budget are covered in SB 335 Budget Technical Corrections. This bill makes a host of minor adjustments to the expansion budget that focus on fixing mistaken references and correcting confusing wording, in addition to other items of interest for the General AssemblySB 335 passed both chambers and has been presented to the Governor.  

Relevant Bills with Action

HB 986: Various Changes to Education Laws

This bill, summarized in this former update, was adjusted by a Proposed Committee Substitute (PCS) in the House Committee on Higher Education. The PCS maintains all the provisions discussed in previous updates, but also adds several more. The PCS states that: 

  • The State Board of Education shall examine the performance of educator preparation programs, and provide information in a user-friendly format to the public.
  • The State Superintendent of Public Instruction shall study ways to reduce testing that is not required by state or federal law. He will then make recommendations for steps to reduce testing. 
  • DPI shall develop content standards and a model mental health training program and suicide risk referral protocol. Some topics that must be covered in the mental health training programs are youth mental health, substance abuse, sexual abuse prevention, sex trafficking prevention. This section of the bill also requires that the State Board of Education repeal its current School-Based Mental Health Initiative which can be found here.  
  • A "Renewal School System" is started. This system would allow local school administrative units with the greatest percentage of Restart schools and that meet other criterion as outlined in the legislation, to submit a plan to the State Board of Education to permit the local board of education to decide matters related to the operation of the schools under its control.  

This bill passed both chambers and has been sent to the Governor. 

HB 374: Regulatory Reform Act of 2018

This bill was heard under a Conference Committee of both the House and the Senate. That committee approved a Proposed Conference Committee Substitute (PCCS). Among several other things, this PCCS repeals certain State Board of Education policies, following the decision of North Carolina State Board of Education v. State of North Carolina and Mark Johnson. It also adds that other State Board of Education's current policies may remain in place until May 30, 2019 in order to ensure the continued administration of the free public school system. This bill passed both chambers and will be sent to the Governor. 

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SB 125: Various Changes to Education

This bill would encourage, but not require, LEAs to adopt an attendance recognition program. The goal of these programs would be to increase attendance. In a situation where a local board of education does adopt an attendance recognition program, children cannot be penalized under this program for missing school to serve as a legislative or Governor's page. This bill also enumerates that scholarships available to the biological children of certain veterans are also available to stepchildren, adopted children, and illegitimate children of veterans. This bill has been sent to the Governor. 

HB 92: Cherokee Reg. Plate/Teaching Agreement

This bill, summarized in this former update, has now become Session Law 2018-7. 

Charter School check mark

SB 374: NC Lease-Purchase Act/Charter Sch. Priority

This bill was heard in the Committee on Rules, Calendar and Operations of the House where its Proposed Committee Substitute (PCS) received a favorable report. The PCS addresses several matters not relating to education before adjusting regulations around charter school enrollment priority. This bill would allow charter schools to give enrollment priority to siblings of students who were admitted to that charter school. Currently, enrollment priority may only be extended to siblings of students admitted in the previous year. This bill was re-referred to the House Committee on Rules, Calendar and Operations.

SB 735: Various OLB and Administrative Law Changes 

This bill was amended on Friday, June 15th. The amendment includes language that would direct the State Board of Education to issue a license to practice as a school psychologist to individuals who hold a national board certification. In addition, the State Board of Education shall set forth licensure requirements for all student services personnel. Some language previously in HB 933 Reciprocity/School Psychologist Licensure, which is discusses below, is included in the amendment. This bill passed the House, and will be sent back to the Senate for concurrence. 

HB 933: Reciprocity/School Psychologist Licensure

Summarized in a previous update, this bill was heard in the the Senate Committee on Health Care. A Proposed Committee Substitute (PCS) of this bill received a favorable report. This PCS was discussed in last week's newsletter, and leaves matters relating to school psychologists unchanged. This bill passed the Senate, and failed a concurrence vote in the House. 

School Safety

HB 670: Protect Educational Property

This bill would make the threat of mass violence on an educational property or at an extracurricular activity a Class H felony. HB 670 has passed both chambers, and will be presented to the Governor. 

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SB 15: ISD and Local Board Contracting Changes

This bill was summarized in last weeks update, which can be found here. This week, SB 15 passed the House, and has been sent to the Committee on Rules and Operations of the Senate. 

HB 611: Employment Contract Exception

This bill would allow for local boards of education to employ the spouse of the local superintendent under the condition the employment is approved in an open session meeting of the local board of education. This bill passed both chambers and has been presented to the Governor.  

HB 982: IDD Data Sharing/Longitudinal Data System

This bill, addressed in this former update, was moved to the Senate Committee on Higher Education. 

HB 1031: Local Ed. Funding Dispute Process

This bill received a favorable report for a Proposed Committee Substitute (PCS) in the Committee on Rules, Calendar and Operations of the House. This PCS would establish a fixed process in the event of a funding dispute between local boards of education and local county commissioners. In the event that a local board of education and county commissioners cannot agree on funding, rather than going to court, appropriations will be determined based on a fixed formula. This bill passed both chambers and will be sent to the Governor. 

HB 302: DoDEA/Clinical Educators for Student Teaching

This bill would allow educators employed by a Department of Defense schools to supervise students completing internships. This bill was referred to the Senate Committee on Higher Education. 

HB 852: Real Prop. Tech Correc/Solicitation of Copies.

This bill was amended on Friday, June 15th to include adjustments to need-based public school capital fund grants. In order for a county to be considered a tier one area for fiscal year 2018-19, it must have been designated tier one by the Department of Commerce in 2017 or 2018, and filed a grant application in 2017. Being a tier one area allows counties a fund matching program of $3.00 of grant money to $1.00 in county money, and sets the maximum grant amount at $15,000,000. This bill passed the Senate, and will now be sent to the House. 

Local Bills with Action

HB 1017: Moore County Local Sales Tax Use Restriction

This bill, discussed in this former update, passed the House on Tuesday, June 12th. It passed the House, and was sent to the Committee on Rules and Operations of the Senate. 

HB 1076: Alamance/Guilford Boundary Line

This bill adjusts the boundary line between Guilford and Alamance counties. It declares that if the homes of students move from one county to the other, students, as well as their siblings, will be allowed to complete high school in whichever county they began school. This bill passed the House, and has been referred to the Committee on Rules and Operations of the Senate. 

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2018 Short Session link for bills impacting K-12 education. 

2017 Long Session link for a complete list of bills impacting K-12 education including budget items.

Legislative Calendar

At this time, no legislative matters have been scheduled; However, legislators will continue meeting next week. The legislative calendar can be found in the link above. 

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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