Weekly Legislative Update - Friday, October 19, 2018

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K12 Education Legislation Update

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

October 19, 2018       

The Week In Review and Looking Forward 

Hurricane Relief

Hurricane Florence Recovery Funding

On Monday, October 22, House and Senate members convened for a second round of funding allocations following the October 5th session as outlined in the previous K-12 Education Legislative Update. All legislators unanimously voted in favor of SB 3 - 2018 Hurricane Florence Disaster Recovery Act, which provides an additional $793 million for Hurricane Florence relief funding. This brings the legislature’s total commitment to disaster relief from this devastating storm to $850 million. The majority of this funding comes from the state’s record $2 billion rainy day fund. In less than two years, the total amount appropriated for disaster relief by the legislature has been over $1.2 billion.


From this second round of relief funding, $60M was appropriated toward the Florence Disaster Recovery Fund to distribute to schools in the affected counties. This included the $25M transferred from the Education Lottery Fund.


Legislators will continue to finalize the recovery needs assessment in collaboration with state agenciesMembers plan to reconvene November 27, 2018 and have indicated they will address any remaining recovery needs at that time.

Relevant Bills with Action

School Construction

SB 3: 2018 Hurricane Florence Disaster Recovery Act  Session Law 2018-136


SB 3 unanimously passed the General Assembly and was immediately signed into law by the Governor. This law creates the Hurricane Florence Disaster Recovery Fund (HFDRF)


The bill addresses:

  • $60M for impacted school districts
  • Average Daily Membership adjustments for each affected school district and charter school will be calculated based on the highest student population of the first four months rather than just the first two months of school. This change will assist districts and charters that experienced reduced membership due to student displacement from the storms.


$6.5M in funding was allocated to School Nutrition in the last relief bill, SB 2 covered here.

State Board of Education

NC Elementary Student taking a test

State Board Votes to Reduce Testing in Elementary Schools Affected by Hurricane Florence


The State Board of Education unanimously voted Tuesday to waive a policy requiring kindergarten through third-grade students to take three reading assessments this school year.

In order to provide some relief to North Carolina elementary schools hit hard by Hurricane Florence, some schools will be eligible to receive the one-year waiver from state-required tests while they recover from the effects of the storm. State education officials say districts that were hardest hit by the storm, such as those where students lost a significant amount of time when schools closed, will be eligible to receive the one-year waiver. Under the waiver, Florence-impacted schools can skip the beginning of the year assessment in kindergarten and the middle of the year assessment in first through third-grades. "We welcome any opportunity like this to provide relief and support to districts and charter schools affected by Florence and now Michael," state board chairman Eric Davis said at the end of the emergency meeting.


Schools will have until October 26 to request the waiver from DPI.

School Safety

House Select Committee on School Safety


The 50-member House Select Committee on School Safety and Gaston County school leaders met at the Gaston College Kimbrell Campus. They discussed on-going safety measures and how to fund them through legislation. Members of local law enforcement, parents, teachers, students and others in the community were also on-hand at the meeting. The discussion focused on Student Health, and Student Physical Safety and Security.  Lawmakers and school leaders agreed: school safety must be funded at a higher priority. 


“We continue to work to make sure that all 54 of our school campuses are safe for our students and our community. We have always prided ourselves as being one of the safest urban school districts in North Carolina,” said Superintendent of Schools Jeff Booker. “We’re proud of the commitment of our community to enforce our school safety. It’s something that doesn’t happen without diligence and vigilance.”


The meeting agenda and documents can be found here.

DPI Logo

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

House and Senate are scheduled to reconvene on November 27, 2018 at 12:00 PM.

North Carolina General Assembly 



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

    To view previous 2018 Weekly Legislative Updates click here.

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